Earbuds are designed to stay in your ears for hours at a time. However, there are times when you might be wearing them for a few hours, but the pain is still there.
The same earbuds can also cause ear pain in other cases. It is not something that you can just ignore.
Causes of earbuds ear pain
The most common cause of earbuds ear pain is that they are not properly fitting in your ears. This can happen due to a number of factors.
- You might not be able to put in the earbuds the way you usually do.
- The earbuds may not fit properly in your ears.
- You might have a weak or stiff ear that makes it difficult to insert the earbuds.
These are not the only factors that can cause earbuds ear pain. If you have a hard time putting in earbuds or they are not fitting properly in your ears, you can have a number of other symptoms. You might also feel pain in your ears when you are wearing them.
You can get earbuds ear pain when you have a swollen or irritated ear canal. This can also happen if you have a ruptured eardrum.
If you have a ruptured eardrum, you might be able to hear your voice. However, you might not be able to hear things that are close by. The pain might go away but it could also come back at any time.
You also might be able to hear things in your ears when you are wearing earbuds. This might be the case if you have a condition such as Meniere’s disease.
Meniere’s disease involves hearing that is different from normal. The discomfort could be accompanied by a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear.
In rare cases, there might be a condition that can cause earbuds ear pain. This includes a condition called sensorineural hearing loss. This is a rare condition that affects your inner ear.
If you have this type of hearing loss, you might be able to hear the sounds in your ears when you are wearing earbuds. But you might not be able to hear sounds that are farther away.
You can also have an over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever that you can use to relieve earbuds ear pain. OTC pain relievers might not be as strong as pain-relieving medications that you get from a doctor.
If you have ear pain due to earbuds, there are some things you can do.
- Try using an over-the-counter pain reliever.
- If you are in a car, you can put the earbuds in your ears while you are driving.
- You can wear a hearing aid if the OTC pain reliever isn’t effective.
There are things that you can do to treat the pain and discomfort of earbuds. These include:
- Try putting in the earbuds on a different ear.
- Use a medical device to block the ear canal.
- Use a cold compress.
- Use an ice pack.
You can also try to avoid wearing earbuds for a few hours. This might help to reduce the pain.
The pain of earbuds can be uncomfortable and disruptive. If you are experiencing ear pain when you are wearing earbuds, it is best to see a doctor.
You should also see a doctor if your ear pain is accompanied by symptoms such as:
- Weakness in your arms or legs
- Blurred vision
- A feeling of fullness in your ears
- Hearing loss, which could be a sign of Meniere’s disease
When to see a doctor?
You should tell a doctor about any ear pain. You should also see a doctor if you have any of the symptoms mentioned above.
Treatment for ear pain
If you are experiencing ear pain when you are wearing earbuds, there are some things you can do to try to relieve your discomfort.
- Try using an OTC pain reliever.
- You might be able to find a device that you can wear that blocks the ear canal. You need to get a device that is approved by the FDA.
- Try using a cold compress.
- You can use an ice pack.
If OTC pain relievers aren’t effective, you should see a doctor. You can also see a doctor if you have any of the symptoms mentioned above.
You should see a doctor if you are experiencing extreme ear pain that is affecting your speech.
Seek emergency medical attention if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Hearing loss in one ear
- Difficulty hearing speech
- Hearing loss that affects your understanding of speech
Outlook and prevention
If you have ear pain when you are wearing earbuds, you should see a doctor. You should also see a doctor if you have any of the symptoms mentioned above.
You can reduce the pain by using OTC pain relievers and using a device that blocks your ear canal.
You can also try to wear a hearing aid if the OTC pain relievers aren’t effective.
If your ear pain is related to Meniere’s disease, you can use an OTC pain reliever and you should see a doctor.
What to do if you have earbuds ear pain?
If you are experiencing pain when you are wearing earbuds, you should see a doctor. It is also a good idea to see a doctor if you have any of the symptoms mentioned in this article.
If you do not have any of the symptoms, you should try to use OTC pain relievers. You should also see a doctor if you are experiencing extreme pain.
If your ear pain is related to Meniere’s disease, you can use OTC pain relievers and you should see a doctor.
You should also see a doctor if your ear pain is severe. This might be a sign of another condition that needs medical attention.
If you are experiencing severe pain, you should seek immediate medical attention.
What is the takeaway?
Earbuds are a type of hearing aid. They can help you hear the sounds around you.
You might be able to hear the sounds in your ears when you are wearing earbuds and other types of hearing aids. You might not be able to hear the sounds that are farther away.
If you experience earbuds ear pain, try using OTC pain relievers and using a device that blocks your ear canal.
If you do not have any of the symptoms mentioned in this article, you should try to use OTC pain relievers.
If the pain is severe, you should seek immediate medical attention.
If you experience severe ear pain when you are wearing earbuds, you should see a medical professional.
What to read next?
What you need to know about migraine?
What is a cluster headache?
How to treat cluster headaches?
What are the symptoms of an ear infection?
A migraine attack
What causes ear infections?
How can I prevent ear infections?
Can earbuds cause infection?
What to look out for at your GP appointment?
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What does migraine attack mean?
Migraine attacks are episodes of severe head pain that affect the way you feel and the way you think. These episodes are usually caused by changes in the brain’s blood supply, called migraines.
The pain of a migraine attack is different from a headache. It feels like a band is being placed on your head. You may feel pain on both sides of your head. Some people feel a throbbing or pulsing pain, others feel pressure or a tightness.
Migraines often last for a few hours and then disappear. However, people with migraines can have an attack several times a day, all day or night.
What does a migraine attack feel like?
A migraine attack usually affects one side of the head and some people have pain on both sides.
Common signs that you may have a migraine attack are:
- Sensitivity to light, sound, odour or taste
- Changes in the way you feel, think or walk
- Nausea or vomiting
- Problems with concentration or memory
- Sensitivity to touch or heat
- Abdominal pain
- Sleep problems
- Double vision
- Fatigue and lack of energy
- Feeling tired or weak
- Nausea and vomiting
Migraine attacks can last for a few hours or days and can be mild or severe.
A number of things can trigger a migraine attack, including:
- Hormones, such as those from the menopause
- Changes in the weather
- Some medicines, such as some painkillers
- Changes in the way the body uses certain nutrients, such as iron or magnesium
What does a migraine feel like?
A migraine attack feels different for everyone. For some people, the attack may be on one side of the head and for others, the attack affects both sides of the head.
The pain of a migraine attack may look like:
- A band is being placed on your head.
- The pain is on one side of the head, for example the left side.
- The pain is on both sides of the head, for example the right and left side.
Migraines can be a very distressing illness and, for many people, it is the worst headache they have ever had.
Migraine attacks can last for hours or even days and there are many treatments that can help you feel better.
If you feel that you have a migraine attack, contact your GP.
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