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Can blowing your nose damage your hearing?

My husband, who is 76 years old, has had a viral cold since November. He has continuous runny nose and yet stuffed up sinuses, and a cough. He has seen his GP 3 times now and they confirm it is still viral and he will have to wait until his body sorts it out. My question is, can he damage his ears/hearing by too much blowing too hard? His hearing seems worse now. He had a coronary artery bypass graft 2 years ago and is on some cardiac medication and anti-hypertensives.
Asked On : Mon, 24 Jan 2011
Answers:  2 Views:  857
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ENT Specialist 's  Response

I do not think it is a viral infection with symptoms for such a long duration. He can try taking steroid nasal spray, an antihistaminic (such as fexofenadine - safer in cardiac patients), steam inhalations 2-3 times/day and encourage him to drink warm water. If the ear drum is weak enough to get damaged by blowing the nose probably he could have got a perforation of the eardrum. But I feel it is more of fluid accumulation behind the ear drum causing the reduced hearing. Let him consult an ENT specialist and get a thorough examination done.

Dr. Naveen Kumar
Answered: Tue, 25 Jan 2011
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  User's Response
Many thanks, Dr Kumar, this is most helpful.

The GP, on three previous occasions, has averred that my husband's coryzal symptoms are indeed still at at a viral stage and not yet become a bacterial infection. My husband has since discovered that the hearing problem is only in the left ear and (so far) the right ear is fine. The left ear can also be painful at times so I have encouraged him to make another appointment to see his GP and get the problem sorted out. Thank you also for the info on the more cardiac-safe steroid nasal spray, etc.


Vivienne Morris
Answered: Tue, 25 Jan 2011
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