Any ear doctors here (excuse the pun)? I can't pop my ear.

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Don Black, Apr 23, 2003.

  1. Don Black

    Don Black Screenwriter

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    Okay, we all know the feeling when our ears pop on airplanes or at high altitudes. Well, one of my ears won't seem to pop (it's been two days). I tried holding my nose and mouth and blowing but that didn't work. I think it started when I was washing my ears in the shower. But I might be wrong.... Anyone know what the problem is? I'm thinking maybe an ear infection. Thanks guys.
     
  2. Bill Cowmeadow

    Bill Cowmeadow Second Unit

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    Never put anything bigger than an elbow in your ear.

    If, as you say, it started, or you noticed it while washing your ears in the shower, I would bet you do indeed have an infection. If you use a couple of mirrors to look down the canal, and the problem ear has a smaller opening than the other, I would say you have what's known as 'Swimmers Ear'. It won't clear up without antibiotics.

    Bill
     
  3. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    If it's only been a day or two, I wouldn't fret. It'll probably clear.

    It's happened to me a few times myself, usually following a shower.
     
  4. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    Sounds like water to me too.

    if it's a pressure thing, from a rapid change in altitude like an airplane you can always valsalva it, plug your nose, keep your mouth closed and blow. It'll pop it right out most times, unless you have a really bad ear block (ouch)
     
  5. Mark Fitzsimmons

    Mark Fitzsimmons Supporting Actor

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    I had 'swimmers ear' when I was younger. I just remember it hurting to touch my ears.
     
  6. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    For those of you who don't remember or didn't see it, this also happened to Kramer on the final episode of Seinfeld.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    When I was a kid, I'd get swimmer's ear from the shower at least once a year.
     
  8. Mark Shannon

    Mark Shannon Screenwriter

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    this is about a yearly problem for me...

    apparently according to a clinic doctor, one of my ear canals is smaller than the other. Due to this, I get a blockage of wax, which needs to be flushed by a doctor... No amount of cleaning really seems to prevent this...is just happens...

    Sorry if I subjected you to that...
     
  9. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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  10. Randy Tennison

    Randy Tennison Screenwriter

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    I get something like this all the time. Apparently, it is called Meniere's Disease. My body can't regulate the fluid in my ears, causing pressure, dizzyness, and a temporary hearing loss. I take water pills to try to dry myself out (read: Pee all day long)

    Try some decongestants and see if that opens everything up.
     
  11. Dave Morton

    Dave Morton Supporting Actor

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    I used to clean my ears out in the shower all the time. I always got ear infections. My ENT guy told me to keep my ears dry. Even put cotton balls in my ears when I was in the shower. I haven't had an ear infection in quite some time now.

    I would go see the doctor if it lasts much longer. If you have an infection, you need antibiotics. Bill is correct, it won't clear up on it's own if it's an infection.
     
  12. Phil Kim

    Phil Kim Stunt Coordinator

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    What a coincidence! I had an ear pop (a.k.a., airplane ear, barotrauma) that lasted 2-3 days just a day ago. I did a series of holding the nose exercise, then took Sudafed (nasal decongestant). I woke up the next morning and the pop is gone.
     
  13. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    sorry to hear that phil.

    it's pretty uncommon for an ear block like that on a commercial flight as the cabin altitude usually doesn't go over 8,000 feet MSL.
    We you congested before hand perhaps?
     
  14. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    Don:

    If you are not having ear pain yet, it's probably not an infection from "swimmers ear".

    You say you tried the valsalva manuever (pinch your nose & blow) to no avail. This only works when outside pressure is higher than inner ear pressure (behind the eardrum), like just before landing in an airplane, or SCUBA diving. The blowing, forces pressurized air to the inner ear, relieving pressure on the eardrum. Ever wonder why babies cry on airplanes mintues before landing? Swallowing, often fixes this problem, unless severely congested.

    I say you've probably got a few drops of water on the outer side of your eardrum. Happens to me all the time. It won't evaporate ... sometimes not for days. It can also cause muffled hearing on one side and sometimes a buzz, like a tuning fork.

    Here's what I do (no kidding):
    1) Run & jump on the mattress, landing hard on the ear in question. do it a few times. The jolt often dislogges the water. It feels like a pop ... what a relief! If it works, your outer ear will be a little wet.
    2) tilt your head, bad ear up. Squirt a bit of isopropal alcohol in the ear. Cover with your palm and push while shaking your head. The idea is to force the alcohol in to the middle ear to mix with the water on your eardrum, then it will evaporate fast.
    3) #2, followed by #1 above.
    4) see a doctor if nothing else works, they can flush your ears clean in 1 minute.

    good luck -- I think I know what youre feeling, it's incredibly frustrating.

    Scott
     
  15. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    duplicate post removed
     
  16. Don Black

    Don Black Screenwriter

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    Thanks guys. No pain from the ear yet. Just wacky hearing. It's really stunting my enjoyment of surround sound. =) I'll wait it out over the weekend and go see a doctor next week if it doesn't clear up by then. Thanks again for the suggestions, I really wasn't expecting this type of response!
     
  17. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Scott's method works for me, slightly modified, as my ear plugging up is usually caused by earwax getting softened by hot water in the shower and packing down tight.

    I mix isopropyl alcohol and hydrogen peroxide 50/50, place a dropperful in the affected ear and plug the ear with and earplug, wait for the fizzing to stop and turn my head bad ear down to drain out the stuff. I have to repeat every half hour or so, usually clears up within a couple or 3 hours.
     
  18. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

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    My ear plugged up after a ski trip and didn't clear up after the drop in altitude (for more than a week). An earwax removal kit cleared it up in a couple of days.
     
  19. Khoa Tran

    Khoa Tran Supporting Actor

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    you have to suck in, because when you came down from a high altitude the air inside your sacs are at a lower pressure causing irritation, so always blow out going up and suck in going down...it's probably just a lot of wax build up and you can't get the air through, open your mouth really big and try to get it to open up...
     
  20. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    I think it's just the opposite. the inner ear doesn't change and is at a lower pressure due to higher altitude. The valsalva is a proven method, I would imagine devised by dr. valsalva? [​IMG]
     

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