How to Stop Crackling in Ears—You Can Help Yourself

How to Stop Crackling in Ears—You Can Help Yourself

We’ve all occasionally felt or heard odd sounds or sensations in our ears. Unheard noises, buzzing, hissing, and ringing are a few examples. An ear crackling or popping noise is another odd noise. The sound a bowl of rice makes right after milk has been added to it is frequently used to describe ear crackling.

A fresh bowl of some sort of puffed rice paste may make you think of the annoying sound of your ears crackling. It might be a sign of typical seasonal allergies. It might also be a precursor to something more serious.

If you have a middle ear infection, a problem with an ear tube, or another ear or jaw condition, you might hear cracking or popping in your ear. The specific cause and symptoms may influence the course of treatment.

A crackling noise in your ears can result from a number of different conditions. What you need to know about how it might impact your health is provided below.

What Can Cause Crackling in Your Ear?

Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorders

TMJ disorders are a group of problems with the facial muscles and the joint that connects your jaw to your temple bone in your skull. Here, pressure changes in your ear tubes or muscles or jaw bone movement may be the cause of a popping or crackling sound.

Your jaw and the rest of your head are connected by your temporomandibular joint (TMJ). It is near your ears. You may hear strange noises if you have a TMJ issue. If you experience jaw stiffness or pain along with crackling in your ears, you may have a TMJ disorder. Your ears might be fine.

Eustachian Tube Dysfunction

Your middle ear is joined to your upper throat and back of your nose by a tiny, narrow tube called the eustachian tube. One is in each ear.

Eustachian tubes have several functions, including:

  • keeping the pressure in your middle ear equalized with the pressure in your surrounding environment
  • draining fluid from your middle ear
  • preventing infection in the middle ear

Your eustachian tubes become dysfunctional when they don’t open or close correctly. Your ears may start to crackle as a result.

How to Stop Crackling in Ears—You Can Help Yourself

Earwax Buildup

The ear canal secretes wax to protect the structures of the ear canal from germs and other foreign particles. Self-cleaning occurs in the ears. Earwax and dead skin cells are moved from the eardrum to the ear opening, where they dry and fall out, with the assistance of chewing and jaw movement.

The Hearing Loss Association asserts that objects inserted in the ears, such as earplugs, hearing aids, and earbuds, may increase earwax buildup and obstruct the wax’s normal flow out of the ear canal. Earwax buildup can cover the eardrum and cause a crackling noise when it accumulates.

Acute Otitis Media

An infection of the middle ear is acute otitis media. Compared to adults, kids are more likely to experience it. Acute otitis media can be caused by dysfunction of the eustachian tube. Fluid can build up in the middle ear and become infected when the tubes are constrained or blocked.

Eustachian tubes that are blocked or narrowed can cause ear crackling in people with acute otitis media.


A physical examination and a medical history are the first steps a doctor takes when trying to determine what is causing ear pain, crackling, or other ear symptoms.

During the exam, the doctor looks inside the ears using an otoscopeTrusted Source. On the basis of a person’s medical history and this exam alone, they may be able to diagnose them in some situations. In other cases, specialized tests, like hearing tests, can assist in making a diagnosis.

Ear Drops:

According to reliable sources, ear drops may be able to soften the wax in the ear so that it can be removed easily.

Manual Removal of Ear Wax:

For ear wax removal, the doctor may employ a variety of techniques.

Placement of Ear Tubes:

To balance the pressure inside the ear and drain fluid, your doctor may insert tubes in the eardrum. To treat the dysfunction and open the eustachian tube, a small balloon catheter may occasionally be inserted.

Dental Guards:

For those with TMJ disease, dental guards can occasionally be a reliable source of relief. surgery for TMJ disease treatment is a last resort that isn’t always effective.


For severe ear infections or treatments that last longer than 2-3 days, your doctor may suggest a reliable source of antibiotics like amoxicillin.

Many cases of crackling ears will go away on their own over time. If the sound occurs when you have a cold or allergies, you likely have clogged eustachian tubes. While you wait for your body to recover, using an over-the-counter decongestant can help clear your ears.

How to Stop Crackling in Ears—You Can Help Yourself

Too much earwax may be causing your crackling ears. A healthcare provider can clean your ear canals for you or you can use earwax softening kits. Never attempt to insert anything into your ear canals. Your eardrum might get hurt.More serious treatment may be necessary for ear infections. If left untreated, these infections can cause irreversible hearing loss. If you have fever or ear pain, discuss your symptoms with your physician. They’ll check your ears. In the event that a bacterial infection is suspected, they might recommend an antibiotic.Your doctor will concentrate on treating your joint if you have TMJ issues. To relieve joint pain and stiffness, they might recommend muscle relaxants. If that is unsuccessful, they might advise physical therapy or TMJ surgery.

Home Remedies

  • Trying over-the-counter (OTC) decongestants:

The use of over-the-counter decongestants should be limited to no more than three days due to the risk of addiction and rebound congestion. These medications may help reduce mucus and fluid that contribute to issues with the eustachian tubes.

  • Removing earwax:

Home remedies that soften the wax can usually clear up earwax blockages. For instance, putting a few drops of mineral oil or baby oil in the ears can soften hard wax and enable it to naturally drain from the ear.

  • Exercises:

TMJ might benefit from physical therapy exercises. In addition to postural work, these include jaw stretching and strengthening exercises. Stretching the muscles and soft tissues with manual therapy can also increase motion.


If it only occasionally happens, ear crackling is typically not harmful. However, those who experience symptoms frequently or severely should see a doctor for a diagnosis. Ear wax effects, eustachian tube dysfunction, myoclonus, and TMJ disorder are some of the underlying conditions that could be to blame. Mild symptoms can be cured by some natural treatments. Medical treatment may be helpful if these measures are unsuccessful and the crackling continues.

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