Does it seem like everyone has their “mumble switch” turned to the “on” position? That your hearing is muffled?
There are a number of things that could be going on, especially if the problem is in only one ear. The likely culprits are:
- A good old ear infection could be the cause. Known as “glue ear,” it’s just a buildup of fluid in the middle ear that sort of throws a wet blanket on the hearing mechanism.
- Another all too common cause is a buildup of earwax, especially if only one ear seems to be affected. Usually, it will clear up on its own. Be careful trying to dig it out, since you might just push it farther in — and maybe even damage your eardrum.
- A bacterial infection commonly referred to as swimmer’s ear — though you don’t have to swim to get it — is caused by excess moisture in the ear canal. This leads to the infection, which results in swelling, which reduces the diameter of the ear canal. Antibiotics are the normal treatment.
- Getting to the more serious end of the spectrum, a ruptured eardrum can cause muffled hearing. If the damage is not too serious it may very well heal on its own, but surgery is required in severe cases.
- Finally, a tumorous growth in the ear canal will also narrow it and lead to muffled hearing. These tumors are often benign, but still have to be dealt with surgery or radiation.
If things seem muffled in both ears and is persistent, then a visit to a hearing health professional should be scheduled immediately. Contact us today!