Earwax, also known by the medical term cerumen, is a gray, orange, red or yellowish waxy substance secreted in the ear canal of humans and other mammals. It protects the skin of the human ear canal, assists in cleaning and lubrication, and also provides protection against bacteria, fungi, insects, and water.
Fluid behind the eardrum is called serous otitis media. It can create pain and hearing difficulty similar to a middle ear infection. The eardrum can rupture (break) in severe cases of ear barotrauma, causing bleeding or leaking of fluid from the ear. A ruptured eardrum can result in hearing loss.
Deafness is usually the result of inner ear or nerve damage. It may be caused by a congenital defect, injury, disease, certain medication, exposure to loud noise or age-related wear and tear.
The chief symptom is an inability to hear sound.
For some, hearing may be possible with surgery or a hearing device. Lip-reading skills, written or printed text and sign language may help with communication.
An abnormal skin growth in the middle ear behind the eardrum is called cholesteatoma. Repeated infections and/or a tear or pulling inward of the eardrum can allow skin into the middle ear. Cholesteatomas often develop as cysts or pouches that shed layers of old skin, which build up inside the middle ear.
Meniere's disease is a disorder that affects the inner ear. The inner ear is responsible for hearing and balance. The condition causes vertigo, the sensation of spinning. It also leads to hearing problems and a ringing sound in the ear.
But sounds can be harmful when they are too loud, even for a brief time, or when they are both loud and long-lasting. These sounds can damage sensitive structures in the inner ear and cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). ... It can be temporary or permanent, and it can affect one ear or both ears.
Those are middle ear infections, or "otitis media" in doctor speak, and they happen deeper in the ear, behind the eardrum. Usually, swimmer's ear is caused by bacteria, but it can sometimes be brought on by a virus or fungus. ... Itchiness in the ear. Pain, which can become severe.
Tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tis), or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling, or other sounds. The noise can be intermittent or continuous, and can vary in loudness. ... In severe cases, however, tinnitus can cause people to have difficulty concentrating and sleeping.
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