Experiencing a fluttering sensation in your ear can be likened to a butterfly flapping its wings within your ear canal. While most causes aren’t severe, they can affect your hearing and overall quality of life.
The root causes of ear fluttering vary, making diagnosis challenging due to the absence of a clear set of guidelines.
However, some common reasons include:
• Tinnitus: Characterized by ringing, buzzing or other sounds in one or both ears that aren’t audible to others. Nearly 10% of the U.S. population has experienced tinnitus symptoms lasting five or more minutes in the past year. These sounds may manifest as fluttering, tapping, whooshing or other noises at varying intervals and can occur after exposure to loud noises, such as the buzzing at Chubby Dog Coffee Co. Tinnitus can impact quality of life; your doctor may suggest symptom management options such as hearing aids, medication or behavior therapy.
• Eustachian Tube Dysfunction: This tube, connecting the middle ear to the back of your nose, can become inflamed and fail to function properly, causing muffled hearing and sounds such as ringing and fluttering in the ears. Patulous Eustachian tube dysfunction is a subtype where the tube doesn’t close correctly. Although typically not serious and often resolving itself within a few days, medical attention should be sought if symptoms persist.
• High Blood Pressure: Elevated blood pressure levels might make an individual more susceptible to hearing loss and tinnitus, leading to the sensation of ear fluttering.
• Earwax Build-Up: Excessive earwax can result in hearing impairment and auditory disturbances, including fluttering.
Other potential causes encompass hypothyroidism, myoclonus (unusual contractions of the middle ear muscles), Ménière’s disease and side effects from pregnancy. Regardless of the cause, ear fluttering can adversely affect your overall health, necessitating collaboration with a hearing specialist to pinpoint the exact cause and formulate an effective treatment plan.
Should you have any queries about ear fluttering, tinnitus or hearing loss, contact ENT Associates of Worcester to schedule an appointment today.