by timrel

December 2, 2021

unclog ears naturally & fast

Blocked, stuffy ears can make you feel as though sound is muffled, making it difficult to carry out normal conversation. If you're dealing with a clogged ear, and you don't have any associated ear pain, you may be able to treat the issue from home.

There are a number of home remedies that can be used to clear your ears of excess earwax and help relieve other symptoms of clogged ears, such as pain and pressure in the ears.

But before we look at the best remedies for clogged ears, let's take a look at some of the most common causes of ear blockages.

Causes of Blocked Ears


Sinus Infections

A sinus infection can cause swelling of the eustachian tubes in the ear. This can lead to congestion and blockage, resulting hearing difficulties and ear pain.

You can treat sinus infections with oral decongestants, but these typically don't tackle the issues of hearing loss and blocked ears.


Earwax buildup can cause a clogged ear and prevent you from being able to hear as well as you should.

Earwax protects the ear by trapping pollutants and dirt, and acting as a natural lubricant. As it falls out of the ear on its own, earwax should typically be left alone. However, occasionally, earwax can become impacted, resulting in a clogged ear and associated problems.

You may have impacted earwax if you feel as though your ear is blocked, you have a ringing sensation or tinnitus, you're experiencing an earache or hearing loss, or if there's discharge coming from your ear.

Ear Infection

An ear infection is another common reason you may be experiencing clogged ears. Middle ear infections can cause swelling and a buildup of fluid, clogging the ear and causing pain, hearing loss, and potentially further infection.

It's important that you see a doctor if you think you have an ear infection, as some home remedies may make the infection worse.

Swimmer's Ear

Swimmer's ear is a specific type of ear infection affecting the outer ear canal. If you have swimmer's ear, you might experience uncomfortable symptoms like itching in the ear, drainage of fluid, redness, pain, a feeling of fullness in the ear, and muffled hearing.

The cause of swimmer's ear is moisture within the ear (hence the name "swimmer's" ear). This moisture creates an environment in which bacteria can grow and cause an infection. Moisture in the ear canal isn't only common with swimming. It can also be caused by humid weather or even sweating.

How To Unclog Blocked Ears Naturally

You can safely and naturally unblock a clogged ear using some of the remedies below. No matter which remedy you opt for, you'll get the best results if you persist with the remedy for three to five days.

If you don't notice any change within this time frame, it's worth speaking to a doctor and getting your clogged ear checked out by an expert. A doctor can help remove the ear wax or can provide medical advice regarding the blockage.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide can add oxygen to your ear wax, causing it to bubble and dissolve. This makes it easier for it to naturally leave the ear, without your input. Hydrogen peroxide is a common ingredient in ear drops because of its ear wax softening abilities.

To use hydrogen peroxide as a treatment for clogged ears, add the solution to warm water and use an ear dropper to add two to three drops to your affected ear. Massage your ear, then return your head to a neutral position. Do this two times a day for three days to clear clogged ears.

Tea Tree Oil

tea tree oil dropper

Tea tree oil may also be able to help with a blockage caused by nasal or sinus congestion. Tea tree oil has antiseptic and antimicrobial properties, which make it particularly well suited to treating ear infections.

Simply mix one drop of tea tree oil with a teaspoon of olive oil and hold it over your ear, letting it drip into your ear canal. This may help clear any infection and unclog your ears from impacted earwax.

Olive Oil

olive oil in a bottle

Olive oil can be used to loosen and remove impacted earwax, helping relieve clogged ears. For this remedy, it's recommended that you place two to three drops of olive oil in your ear three times a day, for three to five days, to break up and remove excess earwax.

The earwax will fall out of your ear canal overnight when your head is rested. This isn't the quickest remedy - it may take up to two weeks to have its full effect.

If olive oil doesn't help to remove your impacted earwax, you're probably in need of over-the-counter treatment. Don't use this remedy for more than the three to five days recommended, as it may cause more earwax to be produced.

Baby Oil

Most of us have baby oil in our bathroom cupboards, and this oil can be used to soften earwax, making it easier to remove or encouraging it to fall out naturally.

To use baby oil to unclog your ears, warm the oil slightly until it is about room temperature, then use an ear dropper and drop two to three drops into your ear. Keep your head tilted to the side to allow the oil to fully soak into the wax, rather than escaping out of your ear canal. After three minutes, you can stop tilting your head. Repeat this as needed until you no longer feel as though your ear is clogged.

It's important that you only use this remedy when your ears are clogged, as earwax protects us from infections and rids our ears of dirt. Removing too much earwax or adding too much moisture to your inner ear can increase your chances of infection.

natural ways to unclog blocked ears

Mineral Oil

Mineral oil can be used similarly to baby oil and olive oil to help with earwax blockage.

As with the other oils, tilt your head to the side and add two to three drops of mineral oil to your ear to get rid of excessive earwax. Mineral oil has the ability to soften and loosen wax, allowing it to fall out naturally without medical intervention. To thoroughly unclog your ear, you should repeat this process two to three times a day for five days.

Rubbing Alcohol

person spraying rubbing alcohol

Rinsing your ear canal with rubbing alcohol can help dry the ear and prevent infections. This is especially useful if you're experiencing swimmer's ear or excess fluid in your ear canal. Rubbing alcohol can help the wax dry up and fall out on its own, taking with it any of the dirt it has collected. You can also use rubbing alcohol if you've added too many drops of an oil when trying to soften impacted wax.

If you experience any burning when using rubbing alcohol in your ear, stop using the alcohol immediately and speak to a medical professional, as you may have a perforated ear drum.

Valsalva Maneuver

If the blockage in your ears is caused by inflammation of the eustachian tubes, you can try using the valsalva maneuver to remedy the problem.

To do the valsalva maneuver, pinch your nose closed and try to blow air out through the nose. This helps to open the eustachian tubes and relieve some of the pressure that you may be feeling, and help unclog the blocked ear. This maneuver works especially well when you're dealing with air pressure related blockages.

Chewing Gum

person chewing gum

Chewing gum seems like a strange remedy to add to this list, but studies show that it may be able to help unclog ears that are impacted by pressure.

Gum chewing increases saliva production, and, because of this, we swallow more often. The chewing motion can also help open the eustachian tube in the ear. This can help with a build up of fluid from inflammation, and may also relieve the pressure within the tube.

Research suggests that sugar free gum works best for unclogging the ear, as it produces more saliva in the mouth, increasing the number of times we swallow.

Hot Shower

shower head

A hot shower is another unexpected remedy that may be able to help with clogged ears. The steam from the water can soften the wax - or, of course, you could just use the warm water to soften the wax in your ear.

If you let water run into your ear to get rid of wax, tilt your head with the affected ear facing down so that the water can drain out. Dry your ear gently afterwards, but don't stick anything into your ear itself. While a cotton bud or bobby pin might seem like a good solution, this may push the wax together and cause it to become impacted.

Warm Compress

A warm compress can work much like steam from a shower. The warmth from the compress can help melt away excess wax, and the compress of the cloth can help ease any pain in your ear.

To use a warm compress, simply soak a small face towel in warm water and squeeze out the excess water. Press it to the affected ear and hold for five minutes. You can repeat this as necessary.

Ear Irrigation

Ear irrigation is only recommended when other means of unclogging the ears haven't worked. There are risks to ear irrigation, such as infection, a perforated eardrum, and vertigo. You can choose to have a doctor do the irrigation or do it yourself at home.

Ear irrigation works by flushing out wax and any foreign objects with water. To irrigate your ear, fill a syringe with clean water. Place the syringe in your ear and gently push the water in. At this point, if you feel any pain, you should stop immediately. After, dry tour ear using a towel or a few drops of rubbing alcohol to prevent moisture related infections.

You may need to do this a few times to see results, but eventually, the irrigation should flush out the wax from your ear.


Clogged ears are incredibly irritating, but in most cases, you can deal with them naturally at home. It's important not to stick items like cotton swabs, bobby pins, or other foreign objects into your ears, as this may cause earwax to be pushed further back into your ear, only escalating the problem.

Home remedies like oils work effectively to soften hard wax and remove it from the ear, saving you a visit to a pharmacy or doctor. Take note that you should only use these home remedies for a few days. If you see no improvements after 5 days of use, it's worth speaking to a doctor, who can provide medical advice. Remember, there's always a chance that you have an ear infection that needs certain antibiotics to treat.

About the author


I am passionate about health and wellbeing and have writing for over 10 years on the subject. I have a BSc Hons Degree and undertake vigorous research to help people improve their lives and live more a healthy and happy life.

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