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A few days ago, my left ear popped. Ive tried all the self help popping strategies to get it to pop back to normal, but nothing has worked. I've gotten ear drops, tried, blowing air out when holding my nose, yawning, and chewing gum. Everything is louder in my left ear, and it is driving me insane. Some days are better, when it close to being back to normal, and like today, it was totally horrible. People must think I am weird because my left ear is so sensitive right now, with everything being extremely loud. Should I see my doctor? What can be done about this?

L. M.


There are two canals in the ear; auditory canal, from ear to eardrum, and Eustachian tube, from eardrum to throat. Popping your ears is basically widening both canals to try and equalize pressure. This generally causes sounds to become louder.

It sounds like you might have had a low-grade infection of your left ear. Now that it's clearing up it can cause sounds to become louder as the Eustachian tube is unblocked. Also can causes sensitivity.

As for what to do if you experience other symptoms like fever, dizziness, nausea, pain in either ear definitely see your primary doctor. If the loudness lasts more then a month also see your doctor.

In the short term you could wear an earplug to help with the sensitivity.