plugged ear

Clear a Plugged Ear Naturally

Did you wake up one morning unable to hear with the feeling that you left an earplug lingering in your ear? You may have a clogged or plugged ear, one blocked by was buildup, blocked Eustachian tubes (the small tubes that help drain the ears), differences in the pressure of the middle ear and the outside environment, and cold, sinus or ear infection issues. Everyone can be affected by plugged or clogged ears, but children are most likely to suffer from them; especially if they are prone to ear infections or frequent colds.

The best way to help clear out the ears is to figure out why your ears are clogged. If you’re on a plane or quickly changing altitude in a car or when diving, you are most easily able to clear your ears out by using the Valsalva Maneuver or the Tonybee Maneuver. Just wriggling your jaw can clear up environmental pressure problems like that. For more serious issues like a build up of ear wax you’ll need to work just a bit harder.

How do I prevent a Plugged Ear?

  • Avoid extreme temperatures.
  • Dive slowly if you are swimming.
  • Avoid sleeping during descent if you’re on a plane.

What are the symptoms of a Plugged Ear?

  • Trouble hearing
  • Severe earache
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Itching in the ear
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of balance
  • Bleeding or discharge

How Do I get rid of a Plugged Ear?

  • Try a mixture of equal parts isopropyl alcohol and apple cider vinegar. Carefully drop a couple drops into the clogged ear. Do not use if you have a perforated ear drum or an ear infection.
  • Try placing a warm compress over the ear to help loosen and soften anything clogging the inside.
  • Try a throat gargle of warm water with a teaspoon of salt, a spritz of lemon and a bit of honey. It will help soothe the Eustachian tube and loosen congestion.
  • Make a homemade nasal spray from a cup of water, a half teaspoon of salt, a half teaspoon of baking soda and a squeeze bottle.  Use like any other nasal spray two to three times a day.
  • Use tea tree oil in a glass of boiling water. Tilt your head over the steam and let it rise into your ear.
  • Make an ear drop of three drops tea tree oil in a tablespoon of warm olive oil. Let it trickle gently into your ear.
  • If  your ears ache as well as remain plugged, mash a few cloves of garlic into a paste, wrap in a piece of cloth and hold against the ear for a few minutes once or twice a day.
  • The Valsalva Maneuver – Close your mouth, pinch your nose and blow through your nose till your ears pop. Be careful not to be too aggressive though as this can rupture your ear drums.
  • The Tonybee Maneuver – Take a sip of water, pinch your nose and swallow.
  • Wriggle your jaw by opening your mouth and moving it from side to side.
  • Chew some gum!
  • Yawn!
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