The entire year is allergy season in some places. Allergies can range from mild to acute and can be brought on by everything from pollen to pet dander. The first and most common indications that you are dealing with allergies are commonly itchy eyes and a runny nose.
But more pronounced symptoms, including tinnitus, poor balance, and hearing loss often occur. Increased pressure in the inner and middle ear are responsible for these symptoms.
Why is Your Hearing Affected by Allergies?
Your body produces a chemical called histamine when it detects an environmental allergen. This release results in the familiar sniffles and itchy eye symptoms of allergies. One less prevalent symptom is the buildup of fluid in your inner and middle ear. This is how your body stops the allergen from working its way deeper into your ear canal. This fluid produces pressure that can trigger tinnitus, problems hearing, and even loss of balance as your equilibrium is disrupted.
Treatment For Hearing Loss Caused by Allergies
There are many ways to manage the symptoms of allergies. Over-the-counter medications like Claritin, Zyrtec, and Allegra are normally the first solution. Mild cases can be successfully managed within a couple of days and initial relief typically begins after the first dose. These products are also safe for prolonged long term use if necessary. Others, such as Benadryl, Sudafed, and Afrin, can be used temporarily for relief, but are not advised for long term use because they can cause undesirable side effects.
You can also combine over-the-counter medications with natural solutions or the natural remedies can in some cases even be utilized by themselves. A Neti pot or saline solutions are some examples. In certain situations, even a simple hot shower can lead to improvement, particularly when paired with a vapor tablet. Environmental changes, like routinely washing fabrics in hot water, using a damp cloth to reduce dust on surfaces, and using an air purifier can also go a long way. Be certain that you give your pets a bath frequently if you have any and try to feed them dander control pet food if you’re allergic to them.
Already Tried All That?
For some people over-the-counter and natural remedies won’t be sufficient. If you’ve tried these solutions over the course of a few weeks and you’re not having any relief it could be time to get professional assistance. To find out if you need an allergy shot, you will have to consult an allergist. These shots will be delivered in slowly increasing dosages once a week for up to six months before transitioning to a shot once a month. These shots work by releasing a small amount of allergen into your system which enables your body to learn how to deal with it. Although it only takes about eight months for patients to experience some relief, this therapy will require a long term commitment of as much as five years.
If you still have pressure in your ears and none of these approaches help, it’s time to have a hearing test.