During the beginning of summer 2001 I began noticing that I kept having to pop my ears by yawning every now and then, and that when I swallowed, there was a noticable click sound. Sort of between a click and a crunch. Just a couple or three clicks. After doing a little research, I determined that it could be my eustachian tubes pressing together and then coming apart when i swallowed. My belief was essentially confirmed when I followed a suggestion I had read of getting some Afrin nasal spray, inhaling it through the nose, then plugging the nose and blowing, which usually plugged up my ears. This got the Afrin into my eustachian tubes, and after a little while, I felt normal. Of course, it doesn't last, and in fact the day after using afrin is twice as bad as before.
I tried a bunch of other things to try and rid myself of my problem, but finally decided to go see a general practice doctor. He was impressed that I had diagnosed myself with ETD (eustachian tube dysfunction) and gave me a prescription for Claritin. He explained that mucous was covering the opening to my eustachian tubes, and not allowing them to operate correctly (by normalizing pressure to the middle ear). He believed this was brought on by allergies, although an allergy to what there was no way of determining. Could be hay fever, could be mold, could be elm trees, I'll just have to keep an eye on what things I do that tend to make my nose get stuffed up. I also found that snorting salt water (filtered water with iodized sea salt) and then lying on my back (your eustachian tubes are on the back of your nasal passages) and doing the whole plug your nose and blow thing (which there should be a name for, no?) is a good and drug-free although also only temporary relief.
Anyway, end of story. I should say that during the three months of investigating and trying to cure myself I never really encountered anyone with the exact same symptoms. We are all different, and affected differently by the same ailments. I would also like to say that I have tremendous sympathy for what some of you are going through. HANG IN THERE. I was really freaked out for awhile, I was sure I was going deaf. Well, I'm not going deaf. I have to take a little pill every morning and everything is alright. I'm back to my old self again and happy. Do the research, and go to see the doctor, and if you don't like what he/she tells you, go see another. I've read accounts on this board of people going to TEN different doctors and ENT's. Do the work. Heal Thyself.
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Claritin. Not claritn D, which made me feel like I was crashing from a triple latté all day long.
I actually never got my prescription filled, just took the 2 weeks worth of pills the doctor was able to scrounge up around his office.
So now I'm fine and without the help of any drugs. I don't know what it was that went wrong, but I'm glad it's over. The human body is a strange thing, a constant struggle of the immune system versus bugs. Sometimes the bugs win for awhile. But if you're generally health, eat well, exercise, and keep the stress down, I think the body will right itself. Either that or I was allergic to plant that is no longer creating massive amounts of pollen.
I was reading over your symptoms and I can relate to many of them. I too was on Claritin and it did not good, it actually dried my head up and caused me to drink lots of water. I also felt like I was in a fog for 2-3 days. I guess one medication for someone else may not be the right one for you. I'm happy to know that you are doing well, and I hope that you continue to be healthy.
The thing where you plug your nose and blow, doesn't that hurt? I have clicking in my ears too, and before I go to a doctor I want to try it. I'm kind of a wimp when it comes to pain in my ears, so if it hurts any I don't think I can do it.
For any of you who's suffuring from the following:
clicking, crackling in the ear while talking, yawning, swallowing
sticky feeling back of your throat
clear sticky mucus
itchy inner ears
Chances are it's allergic and you should try some antihistamines.
I went to a GP, who made me try avamys (steroid nasal spray), didn't work, told me to take some reactine (allergy pills), which didn't work either.
I saw 2 ENT's which took a look at my sinus canals using endoscope and one gave me 6 weeks of guaifenicin 300mg, x3 a day, the other said it was some muscle spasm and there's nothing he could do about it.
I've been suffering from this for 3mths and I noticed that my symptoms fluctuate over the days, somedays it feels ok, some other days it feels worse.
If it was an infection, the symptoms should get better or worse, but only into one direction over long period of time. As my symptoms were all over the place, I figured it must be an allergic reaction to something.
Although I tried reactine and it didn't work, I thought maybe I just need a different type of antihistamine for this type of symptoms. Gave Claritin a try last night and within 15min I started noticing a lot of relief of itchiness, and bubbly spit and mucus.
It didn't cure it completely as it's only been 12 hrs, but I plan on taking more claritin and hopefully it will cure.
I know how frustrating and scary symptoms like this can be. I've searched all over the web, spoke to specialitst and couldn't find answers to it. You just really have to figure out what's right for you.
Hang in there. Chances are it's not life threatening and it can be dealt with.