Vibration in ear

What is it, causes & treatment

Vibrations in the ears: causes

Vibrations in the ear are nothing more than a symptom of tinnitus, a condition where you feel as if your head and/or ears are going at the same rate as your heart beat. One of the most common causes is exposure to loud and powerful noise, like at a nightclub or a concert.

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Causes of ear vibration

The causes of a vibrating ear including exposure to excessive loud noises, infections and other diseases. Exposure to frequently loud noises can damage the auditory system and lead to hearing loss, distortion in the perception of sounds and the perception of nonexistent sounds. 


When we experience a rhythmic sound in tune with our heartbeat, we are dealing with pulsatile tinnitus. The common link between pulsatile tinnitus and tinnitus is that to our ears the passage of blood in the blood vessels is perceived like a pulsation.

Eustachian tube dysfunction

The Eustachian tube is a canal that connects the middle ear to the nasopharynx, the upper part of the throat and the back of the nasal cavity. If its function is compromised in any way, you can suffer from discharge, decreased hearing, or ear vibrations. In these cases, a change in pressure and the presence of earwax can particularly impair its function. 

Pain in the jaw joint

The temporo mandibular joints are the joints between the temporal bones of the skull and the lower jaw bone (the mandible). There are two of these joints, one on each side of the face, and they are located near the ears. Recently, some studies have shown a correlation between disorders of the temporo mandibular joint and the occurrence of tinnitus. In fact, there is a neurological connection between the nerves stemming from the jaw and those stemming from the ear. For instance, an altered nerve signal coming from the masticatory muscles and the temporo mandibular joints can can actually disturb one’s auditory perception. 

Allergic rhinitis

Allergic rhinitis is an inflammation of the inner part of the nose caused by an allergen (such as pollen or dust). This may be linked to tinnitus since the allergic substance results in the production of mucus, which can then turn into earwax. 
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Ear vibration: diagnosis

If you think you may be experiencing an Eustachian tube dysfunction, it is best to undergo an ENT examination to determine if you are suffering from any potential ear conditions. Alternatively, you can consult a dentist-gnathologist, an expert in temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems. Oftentimes, problems with the temporomandibular joint, such as bruxism, can also have repercussions on the ear canal. 

Common questions about in ear vibration & fluttering

Why do I feel a vibration or crackling in my ear?

The sensation of vibrations in the ear can also be caused by other conditions such as myringitis or as a result of an inflammation of the eardrum, the membrane located between the ear canal and the middle ear. Ear vibrations, also known as the popping sensation, are often the result of the formation of an earwax plug that needs to be removed.

  • Intense noises: Being exposed to loud noises can cause two main types of hearing loss: temporary hearing threshold shift, which is often perceived as a temporary inability to hear after being exposed to excessively loud noises, and permanent hearing threshold shift. 
  • Ear infections, maily caused by:   
  1. Hearing problems caused by excessive noise. Exposure to very loud noises can damage and often destroy the cells equipped with filaments found inside the ear. 
  2. Accumulation of earwax in the ear canal. Sometimes, the production of a large amount of earwax can impair hearing. 
  3. Some medications that cause tinnitus as a side effect but do not damage the inner ear. 
  4. Temporomandibular disorders. Some people may have misaligned jaw muscles or joints, which can cause tinnitus, as well as adversely affect an individual’s cranial nerves. 
  5. Cardiovascular disease. When this occurs, you may experience a throbbing sensation that coincides with your heartbeat. 
  6. Certain types of tumors that can cause tinnitus or deafness. 
  7. Trauma to the head or neck.
  8. Some diseases such as hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism or fibromyalgia.
  • Traumas: Head and neck trauma can also be a cause for tinnitus which results in headaches, memory loss and dizziness. In the presence of tinnitus, however, it is always advisable to seek medical attention. 

How to stop vibration in ear?

As of right now, there are no definitive remedies for vibrant ears. Depending on the cause, some of the treatments recommended include: 

  • Removal of an occluding earwax plug through the use of specific drops, saline water washes or an earwax removal procedure operated by the otolaryngologist. 
  • Treatment of a vascular pathology; vascular pathologies at the origin of tinnitus may require medication, surgery or other treatments. 
  • Change of medication or dosage in the event that the medication is the apparent cause. 

Why do I feel something inside my ear?

Sometimes, you may have the sensation that something is in your ear. This could be caused by the presence of a very small  bug, the formation of a plug of earwax, or the presence of a foreign body that can cause  itching. In this case, we recommend getting a checkup to help you identify the root cause and possibly rule out a more serious condition. 
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