What’s The Cause of That Crackling Sound in my Ear?

Bowl of Rice Krispies making noise in your ear.

Are you hearing crackling in your ear? A disorder known as tinnitus can produce numerous different noises in your ears including whooshing, buzzing, ringing, and crackling. Here is some important facts.

Where is that crackling, ringing, or buzzing sound coming from? When it comes to somebody who uses hearing aids, it may mean they need to be adjusted and fitted. But if you don’t use hearing aids it might be tinnitus.

Even though we typically think of our ears with regards to what we see on the outside, there’s more than meets the eye – or in this case, the ear. Here are a few of the more prevalent sounds you may hear in your ears, and what they could reveal is happening.

I’m Hearing a Snap, Crackle, And Pop in my Ears But What’s The Cause?

We can tell you this – it’s not Rice Krispies. It isn’t unusual to hear a popping or crackling sound when there’s a change in pressure in your ear. This can be because you had an altitude change, went underwater, or just yawned. A tiny part of your ear known as the eustachian tube is the source of these noises. When these mucus lined passages open up to neutralize the air pressure, fluid, and air circulate causing these noises to manifest.

Sometimes, like when you’re dealing with allergies, a cold, or an ear infection, an overabundance of mucus in your system can gum up the eustachian tubes and interfere with what is usually an automatic process (keep in mind, your ears, nose, and throat or all connected). In serious cases where decongestant sprays, chicken soup, or antibiotics don’t provide relief, a blockage may call for medical treatment such as surgery.

I’m Hearing Vibration in my Ears – What Does That Mean?

Sometimes tinnitus manifests as a vibration in the ears. Technically speaking, tinnitus is the scientific term for when somebody hears abnormal noises, such as vibrations, in their ears that do not come from any outside sources. It’s generally described as a ringing in the ears and can, in some instances, be mild, and in others, debilitating.

Is There Anything That Can be Done?

Again, if you have hearing aids, you should first check those. You might hear these types of sounds for several reasons: your batteries are running low, the hearing aids aren’t correctly positioned in your ears, the volume is too loud, or your hair is rubbing up against it. But if you don’t have hearing aids and you’re hearing this kind of sound, it could also be caused by excess earwax.

It seems logical that too much wax could make it hard to hear and cause irritation or even inner ear infections, but how can earwax make a sound? If it is touching your eardrum, it can actually hinder the eardrum’s ability to function, which is what causes the ringing or buzzing. The good thing is, earwax issues are easily fixed.

Reach out to us if you have strange sounds in your ears. We can check your hearing aid to make certain it’s functioning correctly.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.