Muffled Hearing! A Complete Guide
The hearing is one of the most important senses of humans. Hearing problems can almost cripple your whole life. The muffled hearing is the sudden loss of hearing at once or gradual loss over several days. This hearing problem is increasing rapidly, 2 to 3 children's of every 1000 born in the United States encounter hearing problems. People often take such problems for granted but this may result in a complete hearing loss under some special situations. Therefore, this should be considered a medical emergency and you should visit your doctor immediately. A proper treatment for muffled hearing includes proper hearing testing and then solutions for the problem. This can give relief to the patients with sudden muffled hearing in one ear.
You often feel dizziness as well. And it may sometimes make you feel light-headed.
- Muffled conversation sounds
Ear discomfort during the muffled hearing is the first symptom which causes muffled conversation sounds in the ear. You often feel a lot of pressure in the ear as well when you are underwater.
- Difficulty in group conversations
Group conversations often include sounds of every individual of the group at the same time. When the whole group is speaking at the same time, it becomes difficult for the people with muffled hearing to understand them.
- The problem with high pitched sounds
People suffering from muffled hearing also face problems listening to high pitch sounds. They cannot understand loud music or any other sound which is rich in high pitch frequencies.
The muffled hearing is mainly caused by the compaction of earwax in the ear canal. The earwax creates a barrier or blockage in the ear canal which makes it hard for sound waves to pass from the outer ear to the inner ear. The more wax means it is more likely to affect the hearing. Earwax is important for the sensory system because it helps in preventing dust and debris from getting into the inner part of the ear. However, if excessive earwax accumulates, it will harden and lead to blockage in the ear which causes muffled hearing. Beside earwax, other materials such as debris can also get into the ear and create blockages. This type of blockage is temporary and can be solved using earwax removal solutions. However, it depends on the level of the blockage so visit your doctor and get the best possible solution.
2. Ear infection
Sometimes ear infections also lead to the muffled hearing. Otitis externa is actually inflammation of the ear. It often results in the discharge of liquid from the ear, pain in the ear due to the bacterial growth in the ear. This type of infection is often found in swimmers. During swimming, some water remains in the ear and create a moist environment which aids bacteria. This infection is likely to impact the hearing and depending upon the severity of the infection it sometimes needs surgery.
3. Pressure imbalance
This is also a temporary hearing discomfort. This is sometimes regarded as an airplane ear. This pressure imbalance can be due to diving, flights, infections, and cold as well. This usually disappears while yawning and swallowing but in some cases, it can damage the eardrum as well. Deep sea diving without proper equalizing can lead to damage hearing.
Treatment of your hearing loss actually depends on the cause of the problem. You must look for the proper diagnoses before trying the treatment. You can use the suggestions from your doctor as well before applying any treatment.
- Clean your ears
If the problem is caused by earwax then you can solve it by cleaning your ears. However, you need to be very cautious while trying this treatment. Wait until earwax emerges from the ear canal. When it is out of the ear, wipe it with soft, moist cloth or a cotton ball. You can use the cotton swabs as well but make sure you don't stick them into the inner part of the ear. The cotton swabs can help you get all the crannies and nooks from the outer part of the ear. You don't need to clean the inner part of the ear, worry about cleaning the outer part of the ear which is visible in the mirror.
Sometimes the muffled hearing is because of an infection and it needs antibiotics for treatment. When antibiotics are prescribed, make sure you are taking them every day. Do not stop the medicines even if the symptoms go away until the doctor tells you to do so. In some cases, the antibiotics may not work then contact your doctor as soon as possible and switch to other medicines.
- Few self-steps for pressure imbalance
Altitude changes could cause pressure imbalance, these activities including diving, climbing, and hiking. Go slowly, either while ascending or descending and give your ears time to adjust. Ear barotrauma may also increase the chance of having a minor nosebleed.
If you're on a plane, try yawning or chewing gum as these may relieve the pressure immediately and cause the ears to "pop".
Look for the symptoms and then visit your doctor immediately for professional diagnosis and suggestions. Sudden muffled hearing can lead to serious problems in your life if not treated in the early stage. Some of the causes of muffled hearing include ear infection, blockage and pressure imbalance. Try the treatments above and hope the information is useful for you.