So What Can Be Done About Hearing Loss Caused By Allergies
First of all, you need a hearing professional to rule in or rule out allergy as part of the problem that is causing your hearing loss. Most ear allergies cause hearing loss, but not all hearing loss is due to allergies. If allergy is creating the conditions for auditory loss related to a secondary condition, both conditions have to be treated.
Then, if your audiologist confirms that allergy is the problem that is causing your auditory loss, you need to get the allergy under control.
Environmental Allergies Can Cause Poor Hearing Tinnitus And A Loss Of Balance
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For those with environmental allergies, Florida can provide a year-round supply of irritating allergens, from pollen to indoor dust mites. Aside from the typical allergy symptoms like runny nose and itchy eyes, allergy sufferers can also experience hearing loss, tinnitus and even poor balance.
Dr. Nilamben Patel at;Allergy Associates of Sarasota;says environmental allergens can cause pressure to build up in the middle and inner ear. The fluid that builds up;to prevent the allergen from reaching further into the ear canal presses against the ear drum. It is caused by your body releasing the chemical histamine.
“This histamine release is what causes typical allergy symptoms to arise, and when the pressure buildup is so strong in the ears, it can cause that annoying ringing and even a loss of balance, because your inner ear and equilibrium is being messed with,” says Patel.
Patel says there are many ways to cure this common allergy symptom.
“The first line of defense for those experiencing muffled hearing or clogged ears due to allergies is over-the-counter antihistamines,” says Patel. “Medications like Claritin, Zyrtec and their generic bottles can begin working within a few days.”
If after all treatments and remedies your ears are still a cause for concern, Patel recommends seeing an ear, nose and throat specialist.
Allergy And Hearing Aids
In addition to causing you some discomfort, allergens can also clog the microphone ports in your;hearing aids, affecting the way your hearing aids function. You can replace the covers of microphone ports easily. Of course,;regular cleaning;of your hearing aid is always advisable, especially during allergy season.
Some people seem to experience an allergic reaction to their hearing aids. If this is the case, be sure to talk to your hearing health professional. The allergy may be caused by poor fit, moisture in the ear, wax accumulation, dry skin or an allergy to the earmold material. Many hearing aid manufacturers have options for people with sensitive ears such as hypoallergenic;shell materials or coatings that provide relief.;
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Symptoms Of Hearing Loss Due To Allergy
A temporary hearing loss caused by pollen allergies is typically common in children. Children are more susceptible to ear infections because they have a shorter eustachian tube, making it easier for a build-up of mucus to occur.
You should look out for the following symptoms, especially if you or your child suffers from hay fever or other allergies:
- Ear ache
- A short-term loss of hearing
- Feeling imbalanced
It is important to see medical advice if symptoms are recurring after the allergic reactions has passed over.
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Hearing loss can be annoying, frustrating, and even scary. An experienced ENT specialist at Advanced ENT & Allergy Center can help you get your life and hearing back. We will determine the diagnosis and create an ideal treatment plan to fit your lifestyle, guiding you through every step. Find relief from your symptoms, hear better, and work with an expert doctor whether youre at home or in our office.
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Can Allergies Cause Inner Ear Problems
Yes, allergies can cause inner, middle, and outer ear problems. Healthy Hearing states that your outer ear can have an allergic reaction to detergents, fragrances, earrings, and pet dander.
Your allergies can cause swelling and itching of the ears, and ear canal.
The middle ear might become blocked if the outer ear swells enough. This swelling can shut off your Eustachian tube, which helps drain fluid from the ears.
When the fluid cannot drain your ears feel full, and this can lead to an ear infection.
The fluid buildup in your ears can throw off your balance, making you dizzy or feel lightheaded.
Healthy Hearing additionally explains that allergies might contribute to hearing loss for people with Menieres disease.
How To Treat Allergy
Remember Never attempt to scratch an ear itch by putting something inside your ear canal such as a hair pin or cotton swab. Instead, if you experience itchiness the best way to treat it is to wipe your outer ear gently with a warm, damp washcloth and dry it thoroughly.
A specialized Ear Nose and Throat doctor will be able to diagnose whether your hearing issues are being caused by allergies. If this is the case, there are several different ways to treat the root allergies causing ear issues. You will likely conduct an allergy test, either in the office or at home, to determine your specific allergies. The suggested treatment from your doctor will depend on the type and severity of your allergies.
Over the counter antihistamines can counteract the bodys reaction to an allergen and relieve symptoms temporarily, reducing swelling and potentially alleviating hearing loss for a short time. This can be an effective approach for seasonal or temporary allergies but requires taking oral pills every day and can lose its effectiveness over time.
Allergy Drops or Shots
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How Are Your Ears Affected
Our ears are made up of three parts the outer ear, the middle ear and the inner ear. Allergic reactions can cause the outer ear to itch or swell. The middle ear contains the Eustachian tube, which acts as a drainage tube of sorts. When mucus clogs the middle ear it affects that drainage. Pressure builds, which can lead to discomfort, popping in the ears or an earache. Your middle ear may itch as well. The inner ear is filled with fluid, and if this fluid becomes infected, you may suffer dizziness, ringing in the ear or loss of balance.
Sometimes a stuffy nose and sinus pressure can radiate to the ears, causing pressure or earaches.
Some people experience a short-term hearing loss due to an allergic reaction. This is known as conductive hearing loss and usually is temporary and resolves itself when the allergies subside.
Young children commonly experience middle;ear infections, which may be triggered by allergies. These infections are known as otitis media. If these occur often, a professional may recommend allergy tests.
Hearing Loss Treatment In Denver Co
We know how frustrating hearing loss can be. The expert doctors at Advanced ENT can determine if your hearing loss is connected to allergy, sinus issues, or ear wax issues and help determine the best treatment for the underlying cause of your symptoms. Find relief from swelling, pain and hearing loss with our specialists.
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Allergies That Can Cause Hearing Loss
Any allergies that affect the middle or inner ear can cause hearing loss. Examples include seasonal, food, pet, and environmental allergies.
In extreme and rare cases, contact dermatitis or metal allergies can lead to severe swelling and affect the middle ear.
This swelling in the middle ear can cause temporary hearing loss.
Other Diseases & Medical Conditions
- Tinnitus is a reported symptom of the following medical conditions:
- Metabolic Disorders: Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, Anemia
- Autoimmune Disorders: Lyme Disease, Fibromyalgia
- Blood Vessel Disorders: High Blood Pressure, Atherosclerosis
- Psychiatric Disorders: Depression, Anxiety, Stress
- Vestibular Disorders: Ménière’s Disease,Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, Otosclerosis
- Tumor-Related Disorders : Acoustic Neuroma, Vestibular Schwannoma, other tumorous growths
Again, a person experiencing tinnitus should not assume that he/she has one of the medical conditions listed above. Only a trained healthcare provider can appropriately diagnose the underlying cause of tinnitus.
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Sinus Pressure And Barometric Trauma
Nasal congestion from a severe cold, flu, or sinus infection can create abnormal pressure in the middle ear, impacting normal hearing and causing tinnitus symptoms.
Acute barotrauma, caused by extreme or rapid changes in air or water pressure, can also damage the middle and inner ear. Potential sources of barotrauma include:
- Diving / Snorkeling / Scuba
- Concussive explosive blasts
Can Allergies Affect Your Ears
Different parts of the ear are susceptible to allergies. Swelling of the ear canals may occur when the skin of the outer ear comes into contact with pollen, insect bites or metals like nickel. This swelling can prevent sound from entering the canal and lead to temporary hearing loss.
The Eustachian tube in the middle ear is an organ that regulates and equalizes pressure. Allergies can cause excess mucus buildup that causes swelling and a plugged-up sensation. Left untreated, permanent hearing loss can occur.
Common inner ear disorders such as Menieres disease can worsen when allergies occur, leading to a flare-up in symptoms.
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When To See A Doctor For Treatment
If youre suffering from other allergy symptoms such as itchy eyes and a stuffy nose, over-the-counter medication may help your ears as well. Antihistamines can reduce the inflammation caused by the allergy, while decongestants will help with a clogged nose and ears. Because ear pressure can be a symptom of many other problems, its advisable to see a doctor if the pressure doesnt go away or becomes painful. Continued pressure can lead to hearing loss.
Also, if your allergy symptoms include ringing in the ears or vertigo , a visit to a hearing care provider is in order.
As many as 30 percent of adults and 40 percent of children reportedly suffer from some type of allergy. Because allergies can cause temporary and in some rare cases permanent hearing loss, its important to know how allergies impact hearing and to address any problems early on.
How Allergies Affect Hearing
Hearing loss caused by allergies is often a form of conductive hearing loss. The transmission of sound is blocked during its journey from the outer or middle ear into the inner ear. How does this happen? If allergies cause a reaction on the skin like itching or swelling of the outer ear and ear canal, it can prevent you from hearing clearly.
Allergies can also lead to fluid building up in your middle ear, and this fluid can block your Eustachian tube . As a result, you can get the feeling that your ears are full or clogged and experience some measure of hearing loss. Since fluid buildup can be a breeding ground for bacteria, it can also lead to ear infections and further damage your hearing.
Though the inner ear is the part least likely to be affected by allergies, if infected, it can cause symptoms like dizziness, pressure, and tinnitus. Additionally, while the exact cause of Menieres disease remains unknown, allergies are thought to be one of the potential triggers. For those who have been diagnosed with Menieres, an allergic reaction in the inner ear can increase the likelihood of developing hearing loss.
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There Are Three Ways Your Ears Can Be Affected By Allergies
The outer ear can be affected by skin irritations, which can cause itching and swelling. The swelling can be so severe that it blocks up the ear canal, causing some degree of hearing loss.
In the middle ear, swelling can block the opening to your middle ear and your Eustachian tube may not be able to drain properly. This can cause fluid and pressure to build up, giving you a feeling of fullness in the affected ear and providing a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and subsequent infection. This fluid buildup may also trigger balance problems, such as vertigo, giving you a feeling of being dizzy and light headed.
The inner ear can be affected too, though typically, that only occurs for people who have Ménières Disease. Symptoms include pressure in the ear, hearing loss, vertigo and tinnitus.
How Do Allergies Cause Hearing Loss And Ringing In The Ears
Allergies usually give us symptoms of runny noses, cough, itchy/watery eyes, and sneezing.
These symptoms are taking place near the ears. Due to the proximity to the ears, your symptoms can affect your hearing.
Colds and allergies have very similar symptoms, so its no wonder that when we are sick our ears feel stuffy like we are losing our hearing.
Losing some of your ability to hear clearly while sick or every once in a while from allergies, usually isnt something too concerning as your hearing should come back as the symptoms fade.
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Allergy Related Hearing Loss Treatments
There are some home remedies that can help towards alleviating the symptoms of hay fever or a pollen allergy. Seasonal issues will come and go, any hearing loss caused by hay fever, congestion or a pollen allergy will resolve itself after a while. However, if you feel you are struggling with the symptoms, here are some useful treatments to try:
- Washing the affected ear gently with a warm cloth and dry thoroughly
- Inhale steam or menthol to open the eustachian tube to allow fluid from the middle ear to drain away
- Equalise the pressure in your ears by yawning, chewing gum or holding your nose and blowing gently until your ears pop
- Taking anti-histamines or other over-the-counter allergy relief tablets
This type of hearing loss is short-term and usually resolves itself once the hay fever and pollen allergy subsides. If you feel you are experiencing any changes in hearing, it is important to seek professional advice from a hearing expert. At Amplifon, we offer no obligation FREE hearing consultations where you can speak to one of our full qualified audiologists to give you some peace of mind!
Telling The Difference Between Allergies And Hearing Loss
Many people might put off a hearing test until allergy season is over. However, if your hearing loss doesn’t go away after the season is over, you might have a more serious problem.
The only person that can definitely determine the difference between allergies and hearing loss is an audiologist. However, if you’ve experienced temporary hearing loss in the past, you can rest easy knowing that your issues are most likely caused by allergies.
Allergy-related hearing loss is usually accompanied by dizziness, loss of hearing on one side, congestion, or an earache. As the fluid shifts around in your ear, your pain levels and hearing might change as well. However, if your hearing loss persists for a long period of time, you should see a doctor about the issue.
Many people discover they have permanent hearing loss after visiting the audiologist for allergies. The allergies don’t cause the hearing loss — rather, they had existing hearing loss, and the allergies exacerbated the issue. If you still struggle to hear after pollen season is over, get a hearing test. You might be surprised by the results.
In most cases, permanent hearing loss is caused by the degradation of the cochlea. Hearing loss of this kind will affect certain frequencies of sound; for example, someone with sensorineural hearing loss will struggle to hear women’s voices or consonants in speech.
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Allergies Can Cause Ear Pain
While earaches arent necessarily the most common symptom of an allergic reaction which is why you may not suspect allergies as the cause it can happen. This is because the membrane lining the Eustachian tube can become swollen and inflamed, and this inflammation can lead to an imbalance in the pressure of the ears. The result is fluid buildup and a blocked ear.
Dont Ignore Hearing Loss
Since hearing loss can significantly affect your health, it should never be taken lightly. Even if you think its just a symptom of your seasonal allergies, delaying treatment can make its effects even worse. While it may be difficult to tell the difference between hearing loss caused by allergies and sudden hearing loss, a medical professional can make the distinction and recommend the best course of treatment to protect your hearing.
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Allergies That Cause Tinnitus
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Its associated with many forms of hearing problems, including hearing loss, exposure to loud noise, medications, specific disease, tumors, allergies or even. to determine the likely causes and best treatment for your tinnitus. Here are 10.
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If this is the case could you say that ETD is probably not the cause of my tinnitus?. I’m thinking my allergies may be the cause.