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Does anyone else get eczema/unbearable itchiness in their ear canals?!

(46 Posts)
gagamama Thu 05-Nov-09 17:23:39

This sounds weird, but I nearly always have some degree of itchyness deep inside my ears. Sometimes it drives me absolutely to disraction and I have to abandon what I'm doing to find something to soothe it (kitchen roll twisted into a long thin roll and dipped in E45 is my weapon of choice, and this does provide satisfactory, if temporary, relif - but I have been known to resort to pen lids or tweezers or unfurled paper clips in moments of desperation).

This of course means that I get ear infections very reguarly because I CANNOT avoid itching them when they are really bad, it's not just the itching right inside my head which drives me loopy, but the throbbing I can hear when they're really inflamed. The itchy part is far, far down inside my ear, I imagine it's either right in front of the eardrum or even behind it. My GP has given me steroid drops in the past, but they are very slow to work and don't seem to ever really get down to where the itching is worst.

I don't really suffer with eczema anywhere else. I have occasional flare-ups on a small patch on my knee, which sometimes goes crazy and gets infected, but other than that I have no real skin problems.

Does anyone else have this weird problem? Any hints? I'm currently suffering my umpteenth ear infection this year which is extremely tender and painful, and yet my ear STILL ITCHES!

KelleeBernier Mon 24-Jul-17 16:25:10

Have used about everything there is over two years is to relieve very itchy eczema on my outer ears. Foderma steroid free serum can work and give me amazing effect. This worked on the first day! This is great, sometimes you just have to keep looking

HopefulHamster Sat 13-May-17 13:12:08

My sister had this, for her she cut out dairy and it made all the difference.

Craftycamper Sat 13-May-17 13:09:17

* throat!

Craftycamper Sat 13-May-17 13:07:29

Hi I have suffered these symptoms in the past and tried creams, sprays and antibiotics prescribed by my GP.
I was referred to ear, nose and throats hospital who diagnosed a fungal infection (anti biotics encouraged growth!). I was prescribed canesten drops which worked brilliantly! Can be bought over the counter too. Good luck!

Littlepleasures Sat 13-May-17 12:56:50

DH suffers terribly from this and now he has hearing aids it's really tricky to control. Only thing he has found effective is something called Ear Calm prescribed by his GP. Can be bought over the counter.

terrylene Thu 04-May-17 15:28:25

I got some bicarbonate ear drops from the chemist and used it for five days. Ears not itch for the first time in over twenty years. Set off by hay fever reactions and too much scratching.
I use anti histamine now and no problems (touch wood)

MikaylaDickson Thu 04-May-17 13:56:56

Have used about everything there is over two years is to relieve very itchy eczema on my outer ears. Steroids can work but are not advised for long term use and give me side effects anyway. Foderma serum worked on the first day! This is great, sometimes you just have to keep looking

littletike Tue 13-Sep-16 18:10:41

OMG yes I suffer with this. it was really bad a few years ago and I ended up with a severe infection in both ears and burst ear drums (from the eczema not the itching) it kept coming back and flaring up but has been under control for a while now... shampoo stuff sounds familiar but it stung like hell! To keep on top of it now I gently dry my ears with a cotton bud after every shower/swim/when ever I get water in them. It seems to remove the dead skin so it doesn't flake and cause an issue.

raggletag Fri 09-Sep-16 13:52:14

I have suffered with this for a few years now, I am a DJ and was very concerned about it at first, however it was clarified by a doctor as ear eczema or otitis externa.
My issue is loads of dry flaky skin which weeps when it comes away and the weeping deep down in my ear drives me insane, so I do use cotton buds just to dry it out. I don't want to use steroids though the doctors tell me there is not much other choice. I have tried apple cider vinegar which stings like hell and there is a vinegar based drops available from boots. Haven't tried that.
I had developed an eczema salve for my son which works a treat so I decided to use that. It is made from chickweed infused in borage oil mixed with beeswax. All organic.
When I started using it in my ears the inflammation calms immediately, then there is a slight stinging/itchiness as all the dead skin lifts off. I usually scape that out, keep applying the salve and it seems to work. If I stop using it, the eczema returns. So this has made me look more closely at diet. Diary overload possibly. Ill keep you posted as Im going through that now.

raggletag Fri 09-Sep-16 13:41:54

Hiya, I have tried cider vinegar and it stings like hell. Maybe watered down it would be better.

user1473289517 Thu 08-Sep-16 17:16:38

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Whobeme57 Thu 07-Jul-16 04:19:45

Hi, I've been reading the thread here and I have dead skin in my ear and severe itching. I've tried so many things and nothing works for long periods of time. It keeps coming back. I have gotten so desperate to stop the itching and have used tweezers, pen lids, q-tips, my nails. I get so much dead skin and I end up scratching and peeling the dead skin off. Sometimes my ear swells closed and I can't hear and it becomes infected and painful. I thought I was the one. Help!

choffman12 Sat 28-May-16 22:21:32

danny31 If your doctor or ear, nose and throat specialist never checked your ears for a fungal infection you might have them do that. It could be that they treated you for the wrong type of infection or that a fungal infection happened as a result of the treatment for a bacterial ear infection.

choffman12 Sat 28-May-16 22:16:10

The itchiness in your ears could be the result of ear eczema. Your best bet is to go to an ear, nose, and throat specialist because they have the expertise to know what to do. Mine put me on steroid drops and a steroid cream. As a result, I have very little if any itchiness in my ears. This condition can and does have flare ups. When it flares this can cause an excess of dead, dry skin in the ear canals. You may not know this has happened but if you see an ear, nose, and throat specialist on a regular basis he or she will be able to tell you if this has happened. When it does your ear, nose, and throat specialist will have to remove the dead, dry skin from your ear canals. It is not the most fun thing but any pain or discomfort is minimal. The dead, dry skin does need to be removed though because it can make it hard for you to hear, and it can increase the risk for impacted wax and ear infections. The bottom line is that you most definitely need to see an ear, nose and throat specialist because he or she will be the best person to help you with this.

SparklyTinselTits Tue 29-Dec-15 16:53:31

I've had it for years....DH laughs at me because at least once I day I say "ooo I need a cotton bud...I've got fizzy ears!"
I've been checked at the dr numerous times, for infections, swimmers ear etc, all to no avail. I've just accepted I will have a lifetime of "fizzy ears" confused

goinggrey1978 Tue 29-Dec-15 16:44:58

when i suffer an unknown allergic reaction in my eyes, my ear canals are also itchy and sore!!
going to the gp's later to see if he knows what the unknown source is that keeps causing these reactions!!

Tomorrowisanewday Tue 29-Dec-15 14:30:57

I get something which sounds the same. I had really bad eczema as a child, grew out of it when i was early twenties, but when I get stressed or upset, I get the problem with my ears, and small patches on my face. Doctor thinks the eczema is in my ears, and I get Optimise ear spray, which usually helps very quickly.

danny31 Tue 29-Dec-15 14:15:48

OK, this is only my experience so I hesitate to recommend it, but it has worked, it is easy and cheap.

I have had eczema and recurrent infections in my ears, involving yellow secretions, a cheesy smell, and severe itching, for some years. I took antibiotic drops/ sprays as prescribed. They worked for a while but the infection came back.

I read of a study being conducted by Swedish researchers into medications for resistant infections (admittedly in horses), which included promising results from using - this is where it gets odd - wild fermented mead. I have a couple of beehives in the garden, and by chance had taken some dilute honey which started to ferment, and put it in an airlocked demijohn to see what would happen. So I had a sweet, naturally fermented mead. In the spirit of being prepared to try anything, I put some in my ears, keeping it there for a quarter of an hour or so each side, two to three times a day, several days running. The infected eczema is gone. The better ear has been treatment free for a couple of weeks, and is healthy. The worse one had some skin damage but it is healing steadily. I am still treating it for the time being. My hearing seems unaffected and the mead didn't cause any pain.

There are several reasons it might have worked. Mead is alcoholic, honey contains naturally occurring hydrogen peroxide, sugar is antibacterial. But it may also be related to the wild yeasts and bacteria combating the infection in a similar way to probiotics in digestive health.

Of course, individuals must make their own judgements, and be sensible in the care of their ears. I am, however, really thrilled with the results.

Pleasemrstweedie Sat 14-Nov-15 00:53:31

Interesting post above. I had this for years. It disappeared very quickly when I finally got treatment for my under active thyroid and has not returned.

Hollydolly100 Fri 13-Nov-15 21:47:46

No offence to be taken as I hope your ok but thank god I'm not the only one who suffers with this. I have had this for about 2 years now, but I suffer with chronic sore, flaky dry skin all in my ears that I MUST rip out every day or it makes my ears even more itchy. Iv forever got my finger in my ear and tired every cream going, nothing's worked for me yet. I have to itch my ears with anything I can find. Usually a hair grip but now I'm using pen lids and anything sharp to get it.

It feels absolutely amazing when i itch my ears but then they bleed or pop after and then there all inflamed. It drives me mad, once I start I can't stop! I don't know why I got this so randomly. But I can't tie my hair back as I'm so embarrassed with the state my ears are !

agnesm Tue 21-Jul-15 18:45:34

Regarding eczema in the ear I have had this for a number of years after an ear perforation and regular ear infections. Regarding itchiness I have found swabbing the canal with 100% vitamin E oil and rub Vicks vapour rub morning and night just inside and surrounding th ear stops the itch and finally gives relief. Applying Vicks vapour rub to any eczema takes away the itch, allowing the skin to repair by not scratching.

WaitingForMe Tue 09-Apr-13 16:18:18

DH had this and it improved drastically (along with other things) when he cut right back on caffeine and dairy.

Dahlialover Tue 09-Apr-13 16:00:30

I have had it for years.

The doctor told me not to scratch it hmm

I have had ear drops, but they did nothing. Recently I had metronidazole for something else and it went away. Then it came back again sad

I will have to go back again.

armagh Mon 08-Apr-13 19:06:34

I have it. Only in one ear. One doctor has said it is excema. Another said it was dermatitis and another has said it is psoriosis !

OrbisNonSufficit Sat 06-Apr-13 07:55:43

This happens to me periodically but linked to a really bad allergic flare up. My antihistamines make it go away. It's AWFUL I'm not surprised it's driving you mad!!

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