Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Congestion in the ears - a variant of the norm or a symptom of a disease? Together with ENT specialist Elena Chekaldina from the clinic

"Dawn "

we figure out where the unpleasant sensations come from, what they can testify to and how to deal with them.

Many have encountered congestion in one or both ears. Sometimes congestion

is accompanied by

dizziness, hearing loss or discomfort in the ear (pops, popping, ringing) or an unpleasant feeling as if the ear was full of fluid.

Congestion occurs if the pressure in the middle ear is different from the pressure in the environment. This happens, for example, during take-off or landing of an airplane, during diving or when climbing mountains.

But there are situations when the ears are laying for no apparent reason.

Most often in such cases the “faulty” Eustachian tubes are to blame. So called special canals connecting the middle ear and nasopharynx. When a person swallows or yawns, the Eustachian tubes open and the pressure in the ear and in the environment equalizes. Under such conditions, the eardrum is free to vibrate, and we are able to distinguish sounds without discomfort.

Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Illustration: shutterstock. com

If the Eustachian tubes become inflamed, the air channel that communicates the ear and the environment is “blocked”. As a result, the pressure in the middle ear drops below atmospheric, so that the eardrum begins to “retract”. The membrane cannot vibrate normally, the hearing decreases, and the very unpleasant sensation arises, which we describe as “stuffiness” in the ears.

If the inflammation lasts a long time, fluid begins to accumulate in the ear, which is produced by the mucous membrane lining the cavity of the middle ear.

The second way that fluid can enter the middle ear is from the nose, even before the tube closes completely.

  1. Congestion in the ears - not a separate disease, and a symptom of several diseases, which can be, inter alia, a consequence of the malfunctioning of the Eustachian tubes.
  2. Problems with Eustachian tubes more often occur in children under the age of four. At this age, the hearing organs are not yet fully formed and are most vulnerable.
  3. The most common adult ear congestion is air travel.

    In second place are infectious diseases affecting the nasal cavity, nasopharynx and Eustachian tubes.

Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Photo: shutterstock. com

In healthy people

The Eustachian tubes clog for a short time and the discomfort passes by itself. For the hearing to return to normal, it is enough to swallow, drink water, dissolve the lollipop or chew gum.

Another way to increase pressure in the middle ear is to perform a simple procedure called the Valsalva Maneuver.

  1. Take a deep breath.
  2. Close your mouth and pinch your nose with your fingers.
  3. Exhale carefully.

If the maneuver succeeds, you will hear a slight popping in your ears. This means that the eardrum has returned to normal.

Unpleasant sensations should pass immediately. Sometimes a maneuver is required to be performed several times in a row.

Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Ears, throat and nose are not isolated organs from each other, but a single interconnected system. Because of this, with a cold, the mucous membrane can become inflamed not only in the nose, but also in the Eustachian tubes.

If the problem is really associated with a cold, congestion in the ears will pass in 7-10 days.

It is necessary to consult a doctor in the following cases:

  • the disease does not recede for 10 days or more,
  • the temperature has risen above 38.5 ° C,
  • the temperature remains 5 days and longer,
  • the temperature first subsided, and then began to rise again,
  • shortness of breath appeared,
  • the head and throat, muscles and joints were very sore.

Such inflammation may have

there are many reasons

, some of which are not at all obvious. For example:

  • chronic infection of the nasopharynx, adenoids or sinuses, including chronic sinusitis;
  • gastric juice into the nasopharynx - doctors call this condition “laryngopharyngeal reflux”;
  • allergic reaction;
  • irritation due to tobacco smoke;
  • hormonal changes in the third trimester of pregnancy - sometimes an increase in progesterone levels leads to stuffiness in the ears;
  • mucous diseases membranes, e.g.

    granulomatous disease;

  • neoplasms or enlarged adenoids e may physically block the Eustachian tube.

Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Photo: shutterstock. com

With this disease, people often


of severe and unpredictable dizziness and ringing in the ears, and congestion usually occurs in only one ear. Nevertheless, approximately

in 15% of patients

have both ears laid at once.

Where the disease comes from, scientists have not fully figured out.

Symptoms are thought to be due to the fluid that builds up in the inner ear and affects the organs located there that are responsible for hearing and body position in space.

It is difficult to diagnose Meniere's disease, because the symptoms characteristic of this condition can be associated with many other diseases - from infection of the inner ear to dehydration.

It is very difficult to figure out what exactly caused the inflammation of the Eustachian tubes. Therefore, if your ears are stuffed for several days in a row, you need to contact the otolaryngologist as soon as possible.

Why lays ears for no apparent reason and what to do in this situation

Photo: shutterstock.


  1. Home The cause of congestion in the ears is the difference in pressure in the inner ear and in the environment. Adults usually experience a similar problem during a flight or as a result of inflammation of the Eustachian tubes.
  2. The easiest way to get rid of congestion in the ears is to swallow or do the Valsalva maneuver.
  3. If simple measures do not help, and congestion in the ears lasts several days, consult an ENT doctor.


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