Unclog your blocked ears with these 5 simple tricks!

Sometimes, our ears may feel like there is something blocking them from within, which may happen due to various reasons:
(1) Ear wax
(2) Infection in sinuses
(3) Cold
(4) Shift in air pressure when changing elevations  i.e., going up a mountain, airplane or scuba diving.

The shift in air pressure is caused by the Eustachian Tube (pictured below) not opening properly to allow air to travel to the mid-ear region, causing a difference in pressure and a feeling of blocked ears. Sometimes causing discomfort or pain.

Eustachian Tube

Here are 5 easy tricks that may help alleviate your blocked-ear worries!

1. Swallow some liquids!

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Often, swallowing something can help open up the Eustachian Tube and that blocked ear. Whether it be soup, some water, a fizzy drink, or even just swallowing your saliva, swallowing may help relieve your blocked ears for less serious cases.

2. Jaw Wriggle

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Open your mouth, wriggle your jaw left and right, it’s as simple as that. Some may find this easy technique useful for alleviating their popped ears.

3. The Valsalva Maneuver

Valsalva Maneuver pinch nose unclog blocked ears

The Valsalva Maneuver is named after 17th century physician Antonio Maria Valsalva from Italy, and involves simply pinching or plugging your nose tight and exhaling hard through your nose. This simple method may help if simply swallowing isn’t enough to alleviate your ear woes.

4. The Lowry Technique (Or the Toynbee Maneuver)

thw lowry technique toynbee manuvuer unclog blocked ears

A modified version of the Valsalva Maneuver, this technique requires slightly more coordination and practice, but may help if the Valsalva Maneuver fails to meet the mark. The technique involves carrying out the Valsalva Maneuver while swallowing at the same time, which would in theory, help keep those Eustachian Tubes open.

5. Yawning!

yawning yawn unclog blocked ears

Sometimes, a simple, hard yawn can force those Eustachian Tubes open and restore any pressure differences within your ears. The problem is, sometimes you may not feel like yawning and it may be hard to force your body to let out a yawn.

If the above tips were too difficult to execute by reading, the following instructional video by Singhealth may help.

And if the previous tips all failed to clear your blocked ears, you may have a more serious condition that could require a consultation with an audiologist.

1. Earwax Impaction

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What could be plaguing the inside of your ears could potentially be an accumulated lump of ear wax, blocking the outer ear canal and causing your ears to feel blocked. We would not recommend trying to remove any impacted ear wax yourself by force or using cotton buds, as you could potentially push wax deeper down your ear canal and aggravate the problem. A visit to the nearest ENT doctor (Ear, Nose, Throat) doctor would be a far safer option.

2. Excess liquid in those ears!

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Your affected ears could be filled up with fluid, which could require medical assistance with an ENT (Ear, Nose, Throat) doctor to remove for more serious cases. For such cases, we would definitely not recommend you try any self remedies as the fluid could sometimes be behind the eardrum and self-treatment may come with the risk of damaging the eardrum.

3. SSHL (Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss)

SSHL is the sudden loss of hearing which occurs in a 72 hour period due to damage of the hearing organ or nerve. You should seek treatment with a Ear Nose Throat doctor immediately in all cases of SSHL.

To learn more about SSHL you can scroll through our  slideshow here.

We hope that these tips today have helped our readers with their blocked ears. If you find yourself with blocked ears that any of the simple tricks are unable to solve, please do contact us at Faith Hearing for a consultation as soon as possible.

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