How Allergens Can Affect Your Hearing
When you think about allergies, you think of watery eyes, itchy eyes, sneezing, coughing, congestion, and a post nasal drip. You probably do not think about allergies causing hearing loss. Unfortunately, allergies can cause you to have hearing loss, and some people will have more hearing loss than others.
How Are Hearing Loss And Allergies Related
Allergens make your immune system produce antibodies that release histamine. Histamine produces an involuntary allergic response . This response increases your mucus production, which can cause conductive hearing loss.
Conductive hearing loss is when sound waves are not able to travel through the outer ear. This blockage can be caused by fluid or earwax and is generally temporary.
There are three parts of your ear that can be affected by allergy symptoms: the outer ear, middle ear, and inner ear.
- Outer: Skin reactions can cause swelling and/or itching of the outer ear and ear canal.
- Middle: This is where fluid buildup can happen, causing earaches or ear pressure. When swelling stops your middle ear from draining, it gives your ear a full feeling. Besides being uncomfortable, it can also cause balance issues.
- Inner: Hearing can be temporarily impaired in individuals with inner-ear disorders like Ménières disease.
Can Allergies Cause Tinnitus And Hearing Loss
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Can allergies cause tinnitus? Can a sinus infection result in hearing loss? What is the treatment for allergy induced Tinnitus? Do allergies cause a Tinnitus spike among people who are already suffering from Tinnitus? We explore the connection between allergies and tinnitus and also hearing loss, below.
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How Allergies Affect Hearing
Hearing loss caused by allergies is often a form of conductive hearing loss. The transmission of sound is blocked during its journey from the outer or middle ear into the inner ear. How does this happen? If allergies cause a reaction on the skin like itching or swelling of the outer ear and ear canal, it can prevent you from hearing clearly.
Allergies can also lead to fluid building up in your middle ear, and this fluid can block your Eustachian tube . As a result, you can get the feeling that your ears are full or clogged and experience some measure of hearing loss. Since fluid buildup can be a breeding ground for bacteria, it can also lead to ear infections and further damage your hearing.
Though the inner ear is the part least likely to be affected by allergies, if infected, it can cause symptoms like dizziness, pressure, and tinnitus. Additionally, while the exact cause of Menieres disease remains unknown, allergies are thought to be one of the potential triggers. For those who have been diagnosed with Menieres, an allergic reaction in the inner ear can increase the likelihood of developing hearing loss.
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Allergy Prevention And Treatment
The only truly effective way to prevent allergies is to avoid their triggers, but that would involve taking extreme precautions such as remaining indoors for months at a time. Yes, Athens summers are often oppressive, but its unlikely youre willing to hole up between now and October. In lieu of that, you can take steps such as limiting your outdoor activities to morning and evening hours, using an air-conditioner instead of opening windows both at home and while driving, taking a shower after doing yardwork and keeping your pets out of the bedroom.
To ease allergy symptoms, try over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants. Ibuprofen can help relieve pain, and eye drops should help with itching. Placing a warm washcloth over the affected ear will be helpful in reducing ear pain.
If your symptoms dont clear up in a few days or recur frequently, schedule an appointment with your Athens ENT to discuss long-term treatment strategies.
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Allergy And Ear Pain Home Remedies
Following are the steps you can try at home to reduce or manage discomfort in your ear:
- Rest in an upright position like opposed to lying down, to reduce pressure in the middle ear.
- Put a cold pack on your outer ear for about 20 minutes to reduce pain
- Chew chewing gum to ease pressure and pain
- Take over-the-counter medications like Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, etc, to ease or reduce pain
If your ear pain or earache is caused by seasonal allergies, then to get an effective result the underlying problem should be treated. And in this case, if you are looking for a herbal remedy to solve the related problem then Plantago is an effective herbal remedy for you.
It helps in reducing inflammation of membranes in the upper respiratory tract and it also contains naturally occurring antibiotics. It is the major reason that it is found effective to treat ear problems.
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How Do I Deal With These Issues
The first thing to do to deal with allergy-related ear issues is to address your allergies. First, make an appointment for an allergy test. Once you know what is causing your allergies, your doctor can prescribe a treatment plan that best suits your needs. This can include anything from over-the-counter medicines to immunotherapy.
If you have an ear infection, your doctor may prescribe medicine to treat it, too.
If you do have sudden hearing loss, make an appointment with your doctor right away. While it may just be an allergic response, it could also be the sign of something much more serious.
Remember, allergies may be a nuisance, especially if they affect your ears, but CEENTAs ENT doctors are here to give you the care you need.
This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your doctor. Dr. Kilde practices in our Albemarle office. To make an appointment with him or an ENT doctor near you, call 704-295-3000. You can also schedule an appointment online or through myCEENTAchart.
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Why Are Ear Infections More Common In Children
The eustachian tube spends most of its time closed and typically only opens if it needs to during activities such as swallowing, yawning, or chewing. As a person ages, the eustachian tubes can change. Adults typically have a vertical tube that is wide and rigid, making it easier for any fluids to pass through and drain out of the ear. In children, that draining process is more difficult because their tubes are more horizontal, more narrow, shorter, and less stiff. This is why children are more prone to ear infections.
Do Allergies Cause Hearing Loss Or Tinnitus
Spring has sprung! Along with ushering in warmer weather and beautiful blossoms, the season, unfortunately, increases pollen production and allergy symptoms. Although airborne allergens exist throughout the year, we see a dramatic increase in patients who suffer from allergy-related hearing loss and tinnitus in springtime. This may lead you to wonder: Do allergies cause hearing loss or tinnitus? Yes, in fact, allergies can impact hearing.
Take our Tinnitus Impact Survey to determine the severity of your tinnitus
Allergic rhinitis, more commonly referred to as hay fever, can cause a variety of symptoms, including itchy eyes, sneezing, a runny nose, a feeling of pressure in the ear, and the sensation that the ear is clogged. For some patients, the inflammation and/or excess fluid diminishes the persons ability to hear or creates tinnitus symptoms . Those already suffering from tinnitus may hear louder ringing or experience worsening tinnitus symptoms.
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Home Remedies For Clogged Ears Due To Sinus Infections
Here are some additional home remedies that can help alleviate ear problems associated with sinus infections and even wax build-up.
- Yawning helps redistribute the fluid in your ear.
- Take a hot, steamy shower.
- Make a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and warm water and pour it into the ear.
- Chew gum as it can help move wax out of the ear.
- Combine rubbing alcohol and vinegar and use the mixture as ear drops.
- Pinch your nose and blow to pop your ears.
- Drop warm olive oil into your ear once again this breaks up wax.
- Combine rubbing alcohol and apple cider vinegar as ear drops to help treat infection.
- Apply warm compresses to the ears.
- Gargle with warm water and salt.
Allergy And Hearing Aids
In addition to causing you some discomfort, allergens can also clog the microphone ports in your hearing aids, affecting the way your hearing aids function. You can replace the covers of microphone ports easily. Of course, regular cleaning of your hearing aid is always advisable, especially during allergy season.
Some people seem to experience an allergic reaction to their hearing aids. If this is the case, be sure to talk to your hearing health professional. The allergy may be caused by poor fit, moisture in the ear, wax accumulation, dry skin or an allergy to the earmold material. Many hearing aid manufacturers have options for people with sensitive ears such as hypoallergenic shell materials or coatings that provide relief.
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Can Allergies Cause Ear Infections
Allergies can also lead to the development of ear infections. People who have seasonal or year long allergies are more likely to experience ear infections than those without.
Environmental allergies can irritate the eustachian tube, which runs from the middle ear to the throat. The eustachian tube helps balance pressure between the outer and inner ear.
An allergy can cause swelling around the eustachian tube, which can prevent fluid from draining away from the middle ear.
If this fluid collects behind the ear drum, it increases the risk of bacteria and viruses growing in the fluid. These bacteria and viruses can cause an ear infection in the middle ear.
Symptoms of a middle ear infection can appear suddenly and may include:
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How Do Allergies Impact Ears
Allergy symptoms can affect all three parts of your ear. In the outer ear, you can experience swelling or itching. In the middle ear, fluid build-up can cause earaches or pressure. This pressure is uncomfortable and also can cause balance issues. The fluid also can harbor bacteria, leading to infection. In the inner ear, allergies can affect people who have inner-ear disorders like Menieres disease .
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How To Clear Inner Ear Fluid With Dandelion
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Dandelion is an effective remedy for removing fluid in the inner ear. Fluid buildup between the throat and eustachian tube can cause severe infection. It may also result in tinnitus, vertigo, or loss of hearing. Hence, you must treat it quickly. Here dandelion, the amazing herb known for its extensive medicinal uses comes to your rescue. It is an excellent treatment for how to remove fluid from the ear.
How to use?
- Boil a cup of water
- Pour it in a cup over a teaspoon of dried dandelion leaves
- Strain the mixture and drink it
- For effective healing, consume the dandelion drink at least three times a day
Benefits of dandelion
Dandelion is not just a notorious weed it is a potent herb with miraculous properties. It is natural diuretic and thus, helps in drying out the fluid present in your ear.
Consumption of dandelion herb may cause an allergic reaction in some. It may also interfere with your medications. Hence, consult your doctor before using the remedy.
Already Tried All That
Over-the-counter and natural treatments might not work in some cases. When none of these approaches help over the course of a few weeks professional assistance may be required. An allergist will figure out if you are a good fit for allergy shots. Every week for about six months a shot will be given in increasing dosages then the shots will be decreased to one every month. These shots work by introducing a small amount of allergen into your system which enables your body to learn how to deal with it. This therapy does require a long-term commitment of up to five years, however, patients often feel relief beginning at around eight months.
If you still have pressure in your ears and none of these strategies help, its time to get a hearing test.
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Seasonal Allergies Cause Stuffy Ears
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, more than 50 million Americans experience allergies each year, and allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S.
Spring is the worst time for allergy sufferers thanks to all the pollen in the air. While most people think of allergy symptoms as relating to the eyes, nose, throat and sinuses, its important to note that the sinuses and the ears are connected.
For people with allergies, when the immune system comes into contact with an allergen, like pollen at Boom Island Park, it releases histamine, which increases mucus production and causes swelling. As stated above, this swelling can happen in the Eustachian tubes, causing them to become clogged with excess fluid and wax that cannot drain. The result is a feeling of fullness or stuffiness in the ear, which could even cause some degree of hearing loss.
For more information about treatment options, how spring allergies cause ear problems or to schedule an appointment with an allergist, call Midwest Allergy & Asthma today.
How Your Ears Are Affected By Allergies
Ringing in your ears is usually caused by allergies when the sinus cavity fluids begins to congest the Eustachian tube. This is a drainage passage that leads to the middle ear. Too much fluid here and the middle ear begins to malfunction.
Depending on how severe the congestion is, you might just experience just a feeling of fullness or pressure, ringing in the ears or in some instances, also hearing loss.
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How To Manage This Allergy
There are many ways to treat the symptoms of allergies. Over-the-counter medications like Zyrtec, Claritin, and Allegra are usually the first solution. Minor cases can be successfully managed within a couple of days and initial relief usually begins after the first dose. Long term use of these products is also safe. Other allergy medication can be used short term but arent suggested as a long term strategy because of their possible side effects, these medications include Sudafed, Afrin, and Benadryl.
You can also combine over-the-counter medications with natural solutions or the natural remedies can sometimes even be used by themselves. These include a Neti pot or saline sprays. In certain situations, even a simple hot shower can lead to improvement, particularly when combined with a vapor tablet. Environmental changes, like regularly washing fabrics with hot water, using a damp cloth to minimize dust on surfaces, and running an air purifier can also go a long way. Make sure you bathe your pets routinely if you have any and try to feed them dander control pet food if youre allergic to them.
How Are Your Ears Affected
Our ears are made up of three parts the outer ear, the middle ear and the inner ear. Allergic reactions can cause the outer ear to itch or swell. The middle ear contains the Eustachian tube, which acts as a drainage tube of sorts. When mucus clogs the middle ear it affects that drainage. Pressure builds, which can lead to discomfort, popping in the ears or an earache. Your middle ear may itch as well. The inner ear is filled with fluid, and if this fluid becomes infected, you may suffer dizziness, ringing in the ear or loss of balance.
Sometimes a stuffy nose and sinus pressure can radiate to the ears, causing pressure or earaches.
Some people experience a short-term hearing loss due to an allergic reaction. This is known as conductive hearing loss and usually is temporary and resolves itself when the allergies subside.
Young children commonly experience middle ear infections, which may be triggered by allergies. These infections are known as otitis media. If these occur often, a professional may recommend allergy tests.
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How Allergies Affect Your Hearing
About one out of every five people in Georgia experiences allergies. In addition to the usual barrage of cold-like symptoms that includes itchy, watery eyes runny nose sneezing nasal congestion cough sore throat and post-nasal drip, allergy sufferers are also at risk of experiencing temporary hearing loss.
Your Hearing Can Be Affected By Environmental Allergies
by Audiology Associates of DFW | Mar 2, 2021 | Hearing Loss Articles
The entire year is allergy season in some locations. From pet dander to pollen, allergies can range from a minor annoyance to a daily battle that affects your quality of life. Itchy eyes and a runny nose are the symptoms that are most familiar and can be the first indication that youre suffering from allergies.
But more advanced symptoms, such as poor balance, tinnitus, and hearing loss sometimes occur. Increased pressure in the middle and inner ear are responsible for these symptoms.
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How Can Allergies Cause Tinnitus
Come spring time, allergens in the air can cause a condition called allergic rhinitis. You might know this condition as hay fever. When attacked by allergens, your body releases histamine to fight the foreign allergens. When the histamines do their work, mucus production goes into overdrive.
As mucus-filled fluid builds up in your sinus cavities, you begin to experience all the common symptoms of an allergy. These include sneezing, a runny nose, itchy eyes and sometimes also fullness in the ear or a case of congested ear ringing.
Otitis Media With Effusion
Also called fluid in the middle ear, otitis media with effusion is the buildup of fluid in the ear without an infection. This can sometimes occur when a middle ear infection has not completely healed or there is fluid left over from a cured infection. This condition is also common in young children, but it can occur in older children too. Because theres no infection and no pain, the child usually doesnt act sick or have other symptoms. Some may complain of muffled hearing, which is due to the fluid.
Even though theres no infection, otitis media with effusion can cause other problems, such as making it more difficult for the person to hear. In children, this can sometimes result in speech and language development problems, but long-term effects of otitis media with effusion are rare unless the condition becomes chronic.
What to do for otitis media with effusion
For children over age 1, stopping the use of a pacifier during the day may help fluid in the ear go away.
If otitis media with effusion becomes a chronic problem, meaning it continues for three months or longer, the doctor may want to surgically insert tubes in a childs ears to drain the fluid.
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