Very few things are more annoying than a scratch you can’t reach. And one of the worst places to get an itch: inside the ear. These itches are nearly impossible to reach and can drive a sane person crazy. If you have chronic ear itchiness, there’s actually a pretty simple explanation. So why do your ears itch, and how do you stop that itch?
What causes itchy ears: Contrary to old wives tales, itchy ears are not caused by someone talking bad about you. Your ears are actually full of neurological fibers. If your ear fibers are particularly sensitive, you’re likely to experience more itchiness than the average person.
Other common causes of itchy ears include dry skin, ear canal dermatitis (allergic reaction), ear infection, psoriasis, or a side effect of using a hearing aid. Itchiness can also be caused by too much water in the ear (such as after a swimming trip). Most cases of itchy ears are nothing to worry about and easy to treat, according to Healthline. If you notice bleeding, draining or hearing loss with the itchiness, talk to your doctor.
Treating itchy ears: Inserting objects into your ear to reach the scratch (like a cotton swab or a bobby pin) is unsafe as you risk puncturing your eardrum or causing other damage, according to Healthy Hearing. Instead, try a few of these home remedies for treating an itchy ear:
1. Alcohol and vinegar: Mix one part rubbing alcohol with one part white vinegar. Use a small spoon or dropper to allow a little of the mixture to run into your ear. Tilt your head sideways and let the solution set for a few seconds,before tilting your head the other way and draining. This method can dry out your ear, so keep it to a minimum, Hubpages recommends.
2. Warm oil: Warm your favorite natural oil (olive oil, tea tree, coconut or garlic) to a comfortable temperature and add a few drops to your ear, Home Remedy Shop suggests.
3. Hydrogen peroxide: Mix one part hydrogen peroxide with one part water. Use a small dropper to run the mixture through your ear. This will help clean out the ear wax.
4. Aloe vera: Home Remedy Shop suggests 3 to 5 drops of aloe vera, which can restore pH levels and provide anti-inflammation benefits.
5. Homemade elderberry syrup: Wellness Mama recommends elderberry syrup (her recipe is here), which has antiviral properties, for soothing ear aches and potential infections, especially in kids.
If your itchy ear persists, you may want to talk to a doctor who can prescribe an antibiotic ointment or ear drops, according to Healthline.
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