Blocked ear and ear drum injury
An injury or malfunction of the ear can be disturbing and affect many areas of ones life. It may affect hearing, balance and the ability to sing or hear ones own voice correctly. It is helpful to understand the basics of how the ear works and which part has been affected by injury. The ear drum and middle ear are the mechanical and most simple parts of the ear. The eardrum is a membrane, like a piece of skin, blocking the entry to the middle ear. Entry of air is only possible through the back door, which is the Eustachian tube, connecting the middle ear chamber to the back of the throat. If the Eustachian tube gets blocked, air cannot get in and out, leading to a blocked sensation in the ear.
But why would this tube be blocked? The most common reason is when you have a cold and it gets blocked with mucous. However this annoying feeling of a blocked ear generally disappears once the cold is better. Some people are prone to get blocked ear when flying or changing altitude. If you are unable to open the Eustachian tube to equalise pressure inside and outside the middle ear chamber, you may a get a pressure lock (called reverse block when it occurs in scuba diving) which can be uncomfortable or painful. A more permanent condition is patulous Eustachian tube, which occurs when the Eustachian tube is permanently open, yet it feels as though the ear is permanently blocked.
How can this pressure feeling be relieved?
One of the two muscles of the middle ear, the hammer muscle, has a branch that serves to open and close the Eustachian tube. If the muscle tends to go into spasm and does not have good tonality the result will be a problem with the ear blocking, popping or being unable to equalise. Temporary relief may be achieved through the use of a natural decongestant like peppermint oil, decreasing dairy or wheat intake or doing body work to relax the head and neck muscles. A portable listening program called Sound Therapy often proves to be the most effective way of overcoming this blocked sensation as it works to restore full function to the hammer muscle. Sound Therapy exercises and re-tones the ear muscles and restores their flexibility, and these problems usually resolve. Katy Fitzgerald had always wanted to sing but her blocked ear prevented her. She was featured in the Sydney Morning Herald speaking of her experience where after numerous therapies and medical interventions she finally got relief through this home based listening therapy. Katie said that after a few weeks of listening: One day my ear started to clear and it kept getting clearer and clearer. It was a miracle!
Punctured ear drum
After a puncture to the ear drum, whether this has been surgically repaired or not, there will be some remaining scar tissue. (This is also true if someone has had grommets.) Scar tissue reduces the flexibility of the ear drum and may impair the function and subtle movements of the middle ear bones and muscles. High doses of antioxidants can help promote healing by improving blood flow to the ears and removing free radicals. Long term ear injuries such as this will also be helped by Sound Therapy which stimulates movement, and greater balance and vigour in the mechanical mechanisms or the ear. For more information call the Sound Therapy national enquiry line 1300 55 77 96 www.soundtherapyinternational.com