Ears Still Blocked After A Cold Try These 5 Things
The average adult experiences 2-3 colds per year, making this particular malady exceptionally common. But just because theyre frequency doesnt mean that colds cant make you miserable. Fevers, runny noses, sneezing, coughingcold symptoms come in a myriad of varieties .
But one cold symptom that doesnt get much attention has to do with your ears. As you become congested, your ears could grow blocked, and that can interfere with your hearing and your comfort. If your ears are blocked because of a cold, there are a few things you can try to help relieve your symptoms. This is, of course, assuming there are no signs of an ear infection.
Eustachian Tube Dysfunction Treatment
Symptoms of Eustachian tube dysfunction usually go away without treatment. You can do exercises to open up the tubes. This includes swallowing, yawning, or chewing gum. You can help relieve the full ear feeling by taking a deep breath, pinching your nostrils closed, and blowing with your mouth shut.
If you think your baby may have Eustachian tube dysfunction, feed him or her. You can also give them a pacifier. These encourage the swallow reflex.
If these strategies dont help, your doctor may suggest other options. These can include:
- Using a decongestant to reduce the swelling of the lining of the tubes.
- Taking an antihistamine or using a steroid nasal spray to reduce any allergic response.
- Making a tiny incision in the eardrum and suctioning out the fluid in the middle ear. This gives the Eustachian tube lining time to shrink while the eardrum is healing .
- Implanting small tubes in the eardrums. These let built-up fluid drain out of the middle ear. Children who get a lot of ear infections sometimes get tubes in their ears. They stay in up to 18 months and fall out on their own.
- Using a balloon dilation system. A doctor will use a catheter to insert a small balloon through your nose and into the Eustachian tube. When it is inflated, the balloon opens a pathway for mucus and air to flow through the tube. This can help it function properly.
Ear Pressure Causes And Treatments
Keith Alexander, MD is board-certified in Otolaryngology. He provides services in adult and pediatric ear, nose and throat disorders, and treats allergy and sinus patients of all ages. He specializes in functional and cosmetic nasal surgery, including rhinoplasty. Dr. Alexander can be reached at 278-1114.
Lexington Clinic is Central Kentuckys largest and oldest medical group. With 180+ providers in more than 30 specialties, we have been taking care of 600,000+ visits annually in the Lexington community since 1920.
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Adopt A Good Sleeping Position
Adopting a good sleeping position can also help ease ear congestion by allowing fluid to drain easier from the ears. Many health conditions deteriorate overnight and we wake up feeling groggy and run down. To help prevent your ears becoming congested while you are sleeping, you can do the following:
- If you sleep on your back, use a few pillows to prop your head up and sleep in a semi-upright position. This will help the ear canals to drain properly to prevent clogged ears.
- Some people find relief from blocked up ears by lying on their side. Lay down for about an hour with the congested ear facing down. This can help to reduce pressure and enable your ears to unclog easier.
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Gargling Warm Salt Water
Gargle with a warm salt water is another home remedy to get relief from a congested ear caused by an ear infection. Surprising as it may seem, gargling a saline solution to treat a throat infection can actually help clear your ears.
Dr. Dan Brennan on WebMD says that the salt water helps to soothe a sore throat and actually helps to unblock the Eustachian tubes.2
Here is how to use a salt water gargle to get rid of clogged ears and relieve the symptoms of a sore throat:
- Mix one teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water.
- Swish it around your mouth and gargle for 15 to 20 seconds.
- Spit it out.
- Repeat as often as possible until you feel that your ears are no longer clogged.
Gargling with salt and water is also one of the best home remedies for chest congestion and it is also an effective remedy for clearing throat mucus.
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Some More Tips For Unplugging Your Ears
Sometimes, making a few changes around your home and making some different lifestyle choices can do much to prevent your ears becoming clogged. Here are some of my best tips for unplugging your ears naturally.
Use a humidifier in your bedroom. This will provide your sinuses with the much-needed moisture and might relieve the pressure that is in your Eustachian tubes.
To alleviate the pain of plugged ears, sit in the bathroom with a hot shower running. The steam helps clear the ear canals and prevents them from drying out. Dry ears can make the body over-produce ear wax which can lead to a buildup of excess wax in your ear canals.
If you suffer from an ear infection, read my post about the best home remedies for getting rid of ear infection.
Sinus-related problems can be made worse by temperature extremes. If you feel your nose and ears are playing up, skip the morning jog on a freezing day. If you have a sinus infection read my post about the best ways to treat sinus infections naturally.
Avoid sudden changes in body position and keep your head up. Dont shake your head or stand up fast.
Drink plenty of fluids to thin the mucus in the nasal passages and prevent ear congestion. Avoid alcohol, too much tea and coffee, tobacco, and overly salty foods. They can affect your blood circulation and further worsen the condition of your ears.
How Is A Cholesteatoma Treated
Generally speaking, the only way to treat a cholesteatoma is to have it surgically removed. The cyst must be removed to prevent the complications that can occur if it grows larger. Cholesteatomas dont go away naturally. They usually continue to grow and cause additional problems.
Once a cholesteatoma has been diagnosed, a regimen of antibiotics, ear drops, and careful cleaning of the ear will most likely be prescribed to treat the infected cyst, reduce inflammation, and drain the ear. Your medical professional will then be able to better analyze the growth traits of the cyst and make a plan for surgical removal.
In most cases, the surgery is an outpatient procedure. This means that you dont have to stay in the hospital after the procedure. A hospital stay is only necessary if the cyst is very large or if you have a serious infection. The surgery is done under general anesthesia. After the initial surgery to remove the cyst, follow-up surgery to reconstruct any damaged portions of the inner ear and make sure that the cyst has been completely removed is often necessary.
Once the cholesteatoma is removed, youll need to attend follow-up appointments to evaluate results and ensure the cyst hasnt come back. If the cyst broke any bones in your ear, youll need a second surgery to repair them.
After surgery, some people experience temporary dizziness or taste abnormalities. These side effects almost always resolve themselves within a few days.
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Tea Tree Oil Combined With Steam Inhalations
If a cold is causing your ears to feel clogged, use a tea tree inhalation to get rid of the infection quickly to relieve the congestion. Combining tea tree oil with a simple steam inhalation technique can naturally relieve blocked ears, cure congestion, sore throat, chest infections, and clear up mucus.
Tea tree oil has amazing healing properties which can help to treat viral and bacterial infections in the respiratory system. You can read about the 75 extraordinary uses for tea tree oil.
The journal Clinical Microbiology Reviews reported that tea tree oil contains powerful natural compounds called terpenoids. These have been proven to have an antimicrobial effect against various infection-causing pathogens. For example, tea tree oil can effectively kill off the Streptococcus pyogenes strain of bacteria which is responsible for strep throat.3
How to do it
- Pour boiling water in a bowl.
- Add a few drops of tea tree essential oil you can also use lavender or eucalyptus oils.
- Inhale the steam, but be careful not to get burnt. The steam can also help thin and loosen the mucus in your nasal passages, which in turn will give you relief from clogged ears.
Use the tea tree oil inhalation regularly to get rid of clogged ears that are due to a cold, the flu, or a sinus infection.
Use Warm Olive Oil To Soften Earwax
Olive oil may help water down the consolidated earwax and make it easier to expel. It is a mild fluid that is unlikely to trigger any adverse side effects or irritate the delicate lining of your inner ear.
You can also use mineral oil for this purpose.
Note: Do not use this method if you have a perforated eardrum. Also, make sure that the oil is comfortably warm and not so hot that it ends up burning the delicate inner lining of your ear.
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Drink Plenty Of Water
A runny nose wont often be your primary problem when it comes to clogged ears. Its a stuffy nose you need to watch out for. Your ears become blocked when fluid isnt able to drain as its supposed to. Drinking plenty of water may help your ears feel better when you have a cold.
When you stay hydrated, your nasal mucus does too. Drinking lots of water can help you thin out that nasal mucus, which in turn becomes easier for your body to drain. And the better your sinuses drain, the less congested your ears will feel.
There May Be An Underlying Issue
If the blockage in your ears cant be explained by any of the above possibilities, you may have an underlying condition causing the blockage. For example, you could have a buildup of earwax creating problems. Or there could be an unexpected growth in your ear canal making trouble. Its possible for these issues to develop at the same time as your cold .
In these cases, its certainly a good idea to seek out some professional help, often from a hearing specialist.
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Use Ear Drops For Blocked Ears Treatment
If the above home remedies for blocked ears dont help or you feel you would rather just go for an over the counter treatment, then ask for ear drops at your local drugstore . Ear drops are formulated to soften the ear wax and thus aid in its natural flow from the ears.
The ingredients found in OTC products range from sodium bicarbonate to almond oil and olive oil among others. Ear drops are however not recommended for people with perforated ear drums.
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Visit Dr Goldbergs Office For Professional Help Resolving Your Ent Issues
Whether you are concerned about ear congestion alone, or you have a number of lingering sinus/allergy symptoms, Dr. Joshua Goldberg is a uniquely qualified choice for your care. The Greater Philadelphia areas patient-preferred otolaryngologist, Dr. Goldberg combines his years of expertise with a compassionate, individualized treatment approach to offer the highest level of care. If you would like to arrange an appointment to discuss your treatment options with Dr. Goldberg, you can reach us at 215-659-8805.
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Ear Congestion Causes And How To Relieve Clogged Ears
27th Jan 18 4:44 pm by admin
Taking off in an airplane, swimming completely submerged, or riving up a canyon, all of these situations can cause pressure in the inner ear . The result is ear congestion, or ear fullness. Symptoms like vertigo, pain, tenderness, itching, muffled hearing, and tinnitus can sometimes accompany the ear congestion.
Ear congestion is the name we give to every condition preventing sounds from being heard clearly. It is one of the most frequent ear problems, and there is an increase in recent years due to a rise in upper respiratory tract infections. Also, as we use airplanes as a mean for transportation more frequently, it is logical and normal to expect more ear congestion problems.
But when should you worry, and what are all the causes of ear congestion? Generally speaking, an ear congestion can be easily treated with home remedies. But if it persists for more than five days, you should visit a physician.
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Don’t Know Where To Start
The right diagnosis matters. Don’t guess what is wrong. It can lead to months or years of unnecessary discomfort and may allow a disease process to develop unnecessarily.
If you disagree with your doctor’s assessment of your condition, get a second opinion.
If you have received no confirmatory testing or your doctor did not take a medical history or look at your full list of symptoms that it is very possible that you have been misdiagnosed or impartially diagnosed.
Know that for many cases of long term ear congestion there is a biochemical cause that can be identified and treated.
If you would like to speak to me to ask questions about functional medicine, chronic illness or how I can help you, please schedule a Free 15 Minute Consultation or call or text my office at 913-728-5291.
My clinic offers functional medicine appointments as well as manual chiropractic treatments. I do online consultations for those out-of-state or outside of the United States.
If you think that you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information. Nor should you ever delay seeking medical advice or treatment due to the information contained on this Website.
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How Are Illnesses And Ear Congestion Related
The outer ear, the middle ear, and the inner ear all have their role to play in the proper functioning of your ears. They can also be affected by infections, allergies, and other illnesses.
The nose and ears are connected, so an illness rarely affects just one in isolation. Clogged ears from cold is likely not just an isolated case colds, flu, infections, and allergies can all make you feel bunged up in both of these crucial sense organs.
If you have ear congestion, you might feel ear pressure or fullness together with some sort of muffled hearing. Some people also experience some crackling or buzzing noises.
A congested ear will usually go away on its own after five to seven days and generally isnt something to worry too much about.
However, if your symptoms dont ease after this time and you start to experience ear pain, dizziness, ear discharge, or nose bleeding, you should make a hasty appointment with your doctor as these can indicate a more serious condition.
Clogged Ear: The Sinus
A sinus infection primarily affects your nose, but symptoms can extend to the ears as well. The sinus-ear connection stems from the fact that your sinuses and ears are connected therefore, clogged and congested sinuses also affect the ears.
There are many ways you can help improve your sinus infection and obtain relief in your ears. Below are some tips that can help decongest your sinuses.
- Use a nasal saline or apply a warm moist washcloth to your nose to add moisture. Humidifiers are also useful to help add moisture to the air and not dry out your nose.
- Over-the-counter pain medications can help relieve ear pain.
- Over-the-counter decongestants can help clear out sinus cavities.
- Avoid extreme temperatures hot or cold weather can worsen sinuses.
- Keep your head up putting it down applies added pressure.
Sinus-related ear problems can also lead to dizziness. If you experience dizziness due to sinuses, you may want to avoid fast movements as it can increase dizziness. Its also important to drink plenty of water to thin mucus and avoid caffeine, salt, alcohol and tobacco, which alter blood flow and can worsen dizziness.
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What Causes A Clogged Ear
Clogged ears can disrupt the balance, affect hearing, and also cause pain and discomfort. Both internal and external factors can trigger the condition. They include:
- Barotrauma It occurs when your ears cant adapt to the changing pressure on an airplane .
- Ear Infection It is a result of fluid build-up in the ears that may cause virus or bacteria to multiply . A cold or flu often triggers an ear infection.
- Earwax Impaction It occurs due to an excessive production of earwax, which causes a build-up of wax in the ear canal .
- Presence of a foreign object like cotton inside the ear
- Swimmers Ear This condition results from water being trapped in the ear .
Some of the lesser common causes of ear congestion are migraines and spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leakage.
Why Your Ears Get Plugged Up
Between the area behind your eardrum and the back of your nose and throat is a tube called the Eustachian tube. Youve got two of them one behind each ear.
This tube helps to maintain balanced air pressure between the area behind the eardrum and the area outside of the eardrum, Dr. Goldman explains. Sometimes, when there is an imbalance between the air pressure within the Eustachian tube and the pressure outside of the eardrum, we may feel a plugged-up sensation.
This is called Eustachian tube dysfunction, and it can bring on other symptoms, too:
- Pain inside of your ear.
- Changes in your hearing.
- Ringing in your ears .
Dr. Goldman explains some of the most common causes of ear congestion.
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