Do you ever hear crackling, buzzing, or thumping noises that appear to come out of nowhere? It’s possible, if you have hearing aids, they might need a fitting or need adjustment. But if you don’t use hearing aids the sounds are originating from inside your ear. There’s no need to panic. Even though we commonly think of our ears with respect to what they look like on the outside, there’s much more than what you see. Here are some of the more common noises you might hear inside your ears, and what they may mean is happening. Though most are harmless (and temporary), if any of these sounds are lasting, painful, or otherwise impeding your quality of life, it’s a smart strategy to talk to a hearing specialist.
Popping or Crackling
When there’s a pressure change in your ears, whether it’s from altitude, going underwater or simply yawning, you might hear popping or crackling noises. These noises are caused by a small part of your ear called the eustachian tube. The crackling sound happens when these mucus-lined passageways open up, permitting fluid and air to circulate and equalizing the pressure in your ears. At times this automatic process is interrupted by inflammation triggered by an ear infection or a cold or allergies that gum up the ears. sometimes surgery is needed in extreme cases when the blockage isn’t helped by decongestants or antibiotics. You probably should see a hearing professional if you feel pressure or persistent pain.
Ringing or Buzzing is it Tinnitus?
Once more, if you have hearing aids, you could hear these kinds of sounds if they aren’t sitting properly in your ears, the volume is too loud, or you have low batteries. If you aren’t using hearing aids, earwax might be your problem. Itchiness or possibly ear infections make sense when it comes to earwax, and it’s not surprising that it could make hearing challenging, but how does it create these sounds? The buzzing or ringing is caused when the wax is pushing against the eardrum and inhibiting its motion. But don’t worry, the extra wax can be removed professionally. (Don’t attempt to do this yourself!) Tinnitus is the name for persistent ringing or buzzing. Even buzzing from too much earwax is a form of tinnitus. Tinnitus is a symptom of some sort of health concern and is not itself a disease or disorder. While it could be as straightforward as the buildup of wax, tinnitus is also linked to afflictions including depression and anxiety. Tinnitus can be eased by treating the root health concern; talk to a hearing specialist to learn more.
This sound is one we cause ourself and is a lot less common. Do you know that rumbling you can hear sometimes when you have a really big yawn? It’s the sound of tiny muscles inside your ears contracting in order to offer damage control for sounds you create: They turn down the volume of chewing, yawning, even your own voice! We’re not saying you chew too loudly, it’s just that those noises are so near to your ears that without these muscles, the volume level would be harmful. (But chewing and talking not to mention yawning are not something we can stop doing, it’s lucky we have these little muscles.) These muscles can be controlled by some people, even though it’s quite unusual, they’re called tensor tympani, and they’re able to create that rumble whenever they want.
Thumping or Pulsing
Your most likely not far of the mark if you sometimes think you hear a heartbeat in your ears. Some of the body’s biggest veins are very close to your ears, and if your heart rate’s high, whether it’s from that important job interview or a difficult workout, the sound of your pulse will be picked up by your ears. This is known as pulsatile tinnitus, and unlike other forms of tinnitus, it’s one that not only you hear, if you go to see a hearing expert, he or she will be able to hear it as well. If you’re experiencing pulsatile tinnitus but your pulse is not racing, you need to consult a specialist because that’s not normal. Like other sorts of tinnitus, pulsatile tinnitus is not a disease, it’s a symptom; there are probably health issues if it continues. Because your heart rate should return to normal and you should stop hearing it after your workout when your heart rate comes back to normal.