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Bowl of Rice Krispies making noise in your ear.

Are you hearing crackling in your ear? A condition called tinnitus can produce numerous different sounds in your ears including whooshing, buzzing, ringing, and crackling. Here is what you should know.

Ever hear crackling, thumping, and buzzing noises that seem to come out of nowhere? When it comes to someone who uses hearing aids, it may mean they need to be adjusted and fitted. For everyone else, tinnitus might be the answer.

Even though we mostly think of our ears in terms of what we see on the outside, there’s more than meets the eye – or in this instance, the ear. Here are a few of the more common noises you might hear in your ears, and what they could reveal is happening.

What’s Causing The Snap, Crackle, And Pop in My Ear?

It’s not Rice Krispies that’s for sure. It isn’t unusual to hear a popping or crackling sound when there’s a change in pressure in your ear. This can happen because you had a change in altitude, went underwater, or simply yawned. These sounds are caused by a tiny part of your ear called the eustachian tube. When these mucus lined passages open up to neutralize the air pressure, fluid, and air move causing these sounds to occur.

Sometimes, like when you’re dealing with allergies, a cold, or an ear infection, an excess of mucus in your system can clog up the eustachian tubes and interfere with what is usually an automatic process (keep in mind, your ears, nose, and throat or all connected). Medical assistance, like surgery, is sometimes necessary in extreme cases where nothing else has helped clear the blockage.

I’m Hearing Vibration in my Ears – What Does That Mean?

Vibrations in the ear are often a telltale indication of tinnitus. Tinnitus is the medical term for a disorder that causes people to hear noises that have no outside cause, like vibrations, inside of the ear. Most people will refer to it as a ringing in the ears and it manifests across the spectrum, from barely there to debilitating.

Is There Anything That Can be Done?

Again, if you have hearing aids, you should first check those. You might hear these kinds of sounds for a number of reasons: the hearing aids aren’t sitting correctly within your ears, the volume is too loud, your hair is rubbing against them, or your batteries need to be charged. But if you don’t have hearing aids and you’re hearing this type of sound, it may also be because of accumulated earwax.

It seems logical that too much wax could make it hard to hear and cause itchiness or even inner ear infections, but how can earwax cause a noise? If it’s touching your eardrum, it can actually restrict the eardrum’s ability to function, which is what causes the ringing or buzzing. Luckily, dealing with earwax is usually pretty straightforward.

If you’re hearing unusual sounds, give us a call. We can check your hearing aid to make sure it’s working correctly.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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