It’s safe to say that almost everyone has experienced some degree of ear clogging at some point in their lives. It’s an experience that ranges from annoying to painful, and if it’s irritating enough, it can affect your positive thinking for that whole day!
There are plenty of reasons that clogging can happen. Illness, wax buildup, trapped water, and infections can all lead to congestion in the ears. Obstructions within a small canal in your ear called the Eustachian tube can also lead to clogging. This tube is located between the middle ear and the nose, and it works to balance out middle ear pressure.
Whatever reason your ears are clogged for, chances are you want to get rid of all that congestion quickly. But do you even know that your clogged ears are the cause of your problems?
Here Are 5 Signs Your Ears Are Clogged, And How To Unclog Them Naturally
1. Sinus Stuffiness or Pain
One of the most common signs of clogged ears lies in a stuffy or painful feeling due to sinus pressure. This is typically caused by Eustachian tube congestion, which can make your ears feel excessively tight and lead to added pressure on your sinuses.
· Look Up
Looking or bending down can significantly worsen the pain that you feel when your ears are clogged this way. This means saying “no” to yoga routines and certain exercises, and instead focusing on recovering first.
Stand or walk around often, sit up straight, and prop yourself up with some extra pillow in bed to help relieve some of the pain and promote decongestion.
· Stay Hydrated
Drink a lot of water throughout the day in order to help thin out the stuffiness. This will allow the congestion to thin, clearing out more easily as you go. If you tend to have trouble sleeping because of congestion, drink extra water at night.
Another option for hydration and moisture is a nasal spray. A simple saline spray does the trick when used a few times throughout the day. This can help to dilute the congestion so it can flow out more easily instead of getting clogged.
There is also the option of using a humidifier in your home to promote more moisture in the air. It’ll be better for your air quality, too, and bad air quality can often lead to congestion. If you don’t want to get a humidifier, just take a hot shower whenever the pain flares up.
· Blow Your Nose Right
If the clogging isn’t too bad, you may be able to blow your nose to get rid of the ear congestion. Cover one of your nostrils and blow out, gently, through the other one. Sometimes blowing your nose normally just doesn’t work, so doing it one nostril at a time can be helpful.
· Balance The Temperature
If you’re congested, you’ll want to stay in situations with nicely balanced temperatures. This is the wrong time to go out in the snow, and it’s the wrong time to sit in a sauna. Make sure you feel comfortable, as extreme temperatures can actually cause the congestion to get worse.
If your issues are particularly severe, you may want to go the non-natural route. You can do so with the following methods.
· Pain Medication
If you’re feeling a lot of sinus pressure that is causing severe pain and headaches, over-the-counter painkillers can do wonders. Acetaminophen is a great option in those situations, as are naproxen and ibuprofen.
· Decongestant Sprays
We’ve talked about using nasal sprays before, but something home-done saline solutions just don’t cut it. Buy a nasal decongestant spray for quick and easy relief, but make sure not to overuse them. Using them for three days or more in a row can cause extra congestion.
· Decongestant Tablets
They’re less popular, but plenty of pharmacies sell tablets that you can take which help break down clogs. Talk to your local pharmacists about options, and remember not to take more than the recommended dose!
2. Decreased Hearing or A Full Feeling
Sometimes, your ears might feel like they’re stuffy on their own – and that’s the only sign you need for clogging! They feel full, congested, and stuffy, sometimes to the point of giving you some hearing trouble, where everything around you seems to sound a little muffled. Here’s what you might need to do in order to get this feeling to die down.
You can irrigate your ear to help flush out soft earwax, though it won’t work on overly hardened wax. Ear irrigation needs to be done carefully, but you can do it yourself at home with no problem if you follow instructions. Look up a guide before doing so!
Olive oil, mineral oil, and baby oil are all great ways to help clean out your ears from that full feeling. Choose the type of oil that you want to use, take around three tablespoons of it, and warm it up so that it’s not cold. Before proceeding, test the oil against your wrist to ensure that it isn’t too hot!
Using a dropper of your choice, take some of that oil and gently drop a little bit into your ear – just one or two drops will do. Leave your head tilted with the oil inside your ear so that it can flow in well, maintaining the position for around 15 seconds.
You should do this a second time on the same day; continue to do so twice daily until you don’t feel clogged anymore. But don’t exceed five days in a row!
· Hydrogen Peroxide
Just like with mineral oil, you can use drops of hydrogen peroxide to help clear out your ears. Get some warm water and mix a little hydrogen peroxide into it, then apply the mixture to the inside of your ear with a dropper as you would for oils. You can also use carbamide peroxide otic the same way.
If your ears feel very, very full, then you may want to forgo natural unclogging methods and go for medicinal ones – like over-the-counter ear drops! Till then, keep your positive thinking up!
Dizziness can be a result of excess pressure that is building up within your ear. If you’re so dizzy that you can barely stand, then you need to go to a doctor. But if it’s just mild lightheadedness, then there’s a good chance that it’s from sinus issues.
Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of ways to get naturally treat this issue. Your best bet is avoiding certain things, such as:
- Cigarettes (and other tobacco)
- Fast movements
- Intense exercise
4. Sneezing or Coughing
It’s one thing to have some simple clogging, but when you start to cough or sneeze or display other flu-like systems, then you know the clogging is due to a full-blown flu or cold. In these cases, you may do better seeing a doctor. But if you’re still looking for positive natural unclogging methods for your ears specifically, these may work. (2)
· Get A Warm Compress
Use a warm compress beneath your clogged ears in order to help drain out your nasal passages in a quick and effective way. To do so, start by warming up some water. While it’s hot, grab some clean cloth and gently soak it in that water. Make sure it’s not too hot; you don’t want to burn your skin!
Squeeze the cloth so that it isn’t dripping, then apply it gingerly right under the ear that is clogged. Leave it there for between five and ten minutes for the best results.
· Steam Yourself
Steaming your face can help to relieve the clogging in your ears while also promoting healing for coughs, sneezes, and colds. The easiest way to do this is by running very hot water in the shower and then sitting outside in the bathroom to bask in the steam. You can also take only hot showers for as long as you’re congested.
You can also do this in a more direct way for even more effectiveness. Start by boiling some water in a pot on your stove. Once it’s boiled, take it off the stove and move it somewhere convenient.
Once that’s done, cover your head and the pot with one big towel, hovering your head over the pot. Close your eyes and breathe in deeply to get that steam in your system!
· Try Essential Oils
Essential oils tend to hold a lot of properties that allow them to fight inflammation and congestion. They often also have antibiotic, antifungal, and antiseptic properties that give them lots of positive uses.
Peppermint oil, tea tree oil, and eucalyptus oil are all great essential oil options for this purpose. Use a diffuser and breathe them in to help clear the clogging in your ears. (You can also just inhale the scent straight from the bottle!)
Do note that you should never apply pure essential oil directly onto your skin, as this can lead to burns!
· Use Salt Water
Salt water is a go-to solution for basically most conditions. Grab some warm water and mix a little salt into it, then use this as a mouthwash. Basically, you need to gargle with that salt water solution.
Swish it around your mouth for a few seconds to help reduce mucus as the salt draws out the moisture from its surroundings. Spit it out once you’re done.
5. Ringing Ears, Discharge, and Other Signs
Are your ears ringing? Is there discharge coming out of them? Do your ears hurt very severely? Are you so dizzy you’re losing your balance? It’s time to go to the doctor.
Sure, there are plenty of ways for you to deal with clogged ears naturally, but it’s equally important to know when it’s time to get help. You may have an ear infection or a sinus infection that is causing your clogged ears.
A doctor will be able to give you a diagnosis that works, and they may be able to provide you with more positive, effective methods to clear out your ears. Natural methods are great, but don’t forget that they’re not a replacement for professional, medical help! (3)
Final Thoughts On Some Signs Your Ears Are Clogged And How To Unclog Them Naturally
Clogged ears are annoying, unpleasant, and even painful. Sometimes, though, a number of other symptoms can throw you off from realizing that your ears need attention. Keep an eye out for these 5 signs your ears are clogged and feel free to use those natural methods to deal with the problem!