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Are you feeling frustrated with the seemingly constant itchiness or irritation in and around your ears? Itchy ears can happen for a variety of reasons. 

So before you pick up that cotton swab (please don’t), check out some of the most common reasons for itchy ears. Then, contact Pasha Snoring and Sinus Center today for lasting relief and professi

Ear Infection

If you’re experiencing an itching sensation that’s coming from inside your ear, you could be suffering from an ear infection, especially if it’s coupled with pain. Ear infections can occur as a result of bacteria and viruses. 

While they sometimes go away on their own, it’s a better idea to see your ENT doctor as soon as possible. They can prescribe you ear drops and/or a course of antibiotics to properly treat your ear infection and get you real relief. 

[Related: ENT Doctor: When Do You Need To Pay Them a Visit?]

Improper Cleaning

Cleaning your ears is a fundamental part of maintaining healthy hygiene. Yet surprisingly, few people know how to do it properly.

First, put down the cotton swab! 

Ear specialists agree that cotton swabs (often referred to as “Q-tips,” a brand name) are the worst way to clean your ears. Why? They tend to push earwax further into the canal, often leading to earwax buildup and impaction that can cause a stopped-up sensation, ringing and even infection. 

Besides that, you run the risk of irritating your ear canal, puncturing your eardrum or damaging the delicate bones inside your ears — something that happens surprisingly often. 

What do you use instead? Well, most people shouldn’t need more than a finger and a washcloth to clean their ears. 

Cerumen, or earwax, exists for a reason. It traps foreign particles such as bacteria and fungi while protecting the thin, fragile skin lining your ear canal. Removing it opens the door to a menagerie of health complications. 

So what’s a good ear itching home remedy? 

For most people, jaw motion gradually works excess wax out of the ear canal, which can usually relieve ear itching and discomfort. The tiny bit that occasionally crusts around the entrance to your ear canal is all you need to worry about cleaning. Simply swab it with a damp washcloth while you’re in the shower.

[Related: The Ear Condition That Could Ruin Your Summer Vacation]

Earwax Buildup

In some people, the glands in their ears secrete either too much wax or dry, hard wax. This can lead to a blockage. Symptoms for of an earwax blockage include fullness, earache, ringing, dizziness and even drowsiness.

If you have a blockage due to excess earwax buildup, the safest thing to do is to visit an ear specialist. Depending on the severity of the case, they may recommend over-the-counter cerumen-softening treatments or extract the wax in-office. 

A Note on Home Remedies for Ear Itching

You’ve probably heard of a bizarre home remedy for ear itching or an old-fashioned tradition for relief, such as candling (don’t ask). But these “remedies” all come with risks that far outweigh the results, which are usually nil. A generally safe home remedy for ear itching is simply placing a warm, damp washcloth against the ear canal opening.

Otherwise, see your ENT specialist.

[Related: 3 Ways Lavender Oil Can Help With ENT Problems]

Allergies

Common seasonal, year-round and food allergies can also contribute to itchy ears. A customary reaction to allergens can include itchy or tingly eyes, throat and ears. 

Additionally, an allergic reaction can occur due to something you put directly onto the skin, such as a new sunscreen or cosmetic product. If you’re experiencing itching on the outside of your ear, you may have dermatitis, a common skin irritation that can result in a rash. And if your ears itch at night, dryness or allergies could be the culprit.

Check with your ENT or allergy doctor to determine the cause and correct path toward alleviating these allergies.

[Related: How an Ear’s Health Can Be Impacted by Allergies]

Hearing Aids

Sometimes people who start wearing hearing aids initially experience irritation and itchiness, especially if your skin is sensitive to the aid’s plastic coating. 

Moreover, if your hearing aid doesn’t fit properly or gets water trapped behind it, you’ll definitely feel some discomfort. Talk to your ENT doctor or the specialist who fit you for your device if you’re experiencing hearing aid-related itchiness.

Eczema or Psoriasis

Those of us who already deal with sensitive skin conditions, including eczema and psoriasis, may be more prone to itchy ear canals. Ear drops usually offer some relief, but in severe cases your doctor may prescribe you a steroid medication to calm inflammation. 

Visit the Pasha Snoring and Sinus Center for Itchy Ear Treatment

If you’re suffering from fullness of the ear, ringing, earache or itchiness, schedule an appointment to see us at Pasha Snoring and Sinus Center. You’ll not only feel relief from the pain and discomfort but also reduce your risk of infection, which can lead to other (and more serious) health problems.

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