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Tinnitus and Ear Pressure


Thanks Helen -more good advice.
I can up the Pizotifen by another 0.5mg but had hoped I wouldn’t need to do that. I guess I should do it if this isn’t any better in a couple of days. It seems that I just think I have got things under control and my ears think otherwise.
I am very busy at work even though I am only doing 3 days - lots of pressure and deadlines- so maybe some more time off would help.
There does seem to be a long waiting list for ENT appointments, so I would be tempted to go private.
I was also wondering if it was a migraine trying to break through so may try some ibuprofen to see if that helps. Back to the drawing board! Jan


Hi Janb
I have been suffering for 2 yrs with supposed “chronic migraine” and tried all sorts of meds which didn’t work - the only thing that offered me some temporary respite from the dizziness, ear and face pressure was Sudafed. My neuro could not explain why an over the counter med was having such a drastic positive effect on my symptoms this and so I went to an ENT after persuading my GP to do a sinus CT scan - it turns out that I have a major problem with my sinuses (no congestion or mucus) and now 2 x ENTs have concluded that the sinus issue is likely causing my ear pressure and off balance feeling as both are connected. Both of the ENTs said that ear and or sinus issues can trigger “migraines” and both migraine and ear/sinus issues have the same symptoms so it’s hard to distinguish between the two. This is why Sudafed was working for me -it was both decongesting my ears and thereby relieving the ear pressure and dizziness/off balance feeling as well as shrinking inflamed nasal tissue which helped to relieve the facial pain and head pressure. I will have to have surgery to fix the sinus issue and both ENTs are hopeful that the ear pressure will resolve as a result of resolving the sinus problems.

As you know migraine is a “diagnosis of exclusion” but in my case the neuro clearly hadn’t “excluded” all possibilities. If a sinus CT scan had been done 2 yrs ago and the results of that coupled with ear pressure and disequilibrium, facial pain and head pressure symptoms it is highly likely that I wouldn’t have been given a migraine diagnosis OR I would have been told that my sinus problems were triggering migraines. I would have had the surgery 2yrs ago and I wouldn’t still be suffering. So I would definitely recommend seeing an ENT and particularly if you have a history of ear issues (I have a family history too)
Best wishes


I’ve been exercising my jaw recently to try and keep my eustachian tube clearer. I know it sounds crazy and have no idea if it is working. I look very stupid when doing it. Lol

If you eat healthy food you naturally do this anyway so it’s probably pointless. But I’ll try anything to keep the beast away!


Lol I know exactly what you mean as I do the same and yes it does look bad - but needs must!

James as a fellow ear sufferer I think u might find the following interesting - for the last few days I have felt like there is something in my ear - so my long suffering hubby took a look and said yup there is a lot of hard wax deep down. So for the last 2 days I have been using ear drops to soften it and hells bells I have been so ill for hours after each time I use them - dizzy and really off balance, feeling like my head is down a tunnel, muffled hearing, headache etc basically exactly how I felt at the very start of this 2 yrs ago. At first I though it was a coincidence that perhaps I was just having a migraine so I took a closer note of it yesterday - put the drops in and about an hour later I started with all the above symptoms that lasted for hours. I then had a few hours back to “normal” but when I put the drops in again late last nite the same thing happened about an hour later. Still feel “off” this morning.


That’s very odd indeed!! Ask your ENT to explain that when you next go please and report back!


Yes very odd…perhaps the drops are causing the wax to expand and it’s then pressing on my eardrum and possibly upsetting the pressure balance. I had a tympanogram done recently on my ears - they take a reading of pressure and then they get you to do the valsava and they take the reading again. I was told that both readings on both ears were within the normal ranges however in that same ear (left) that’s giving me trouble now the difference in the pressure reading between the two tests was bigger than on the other ear - which they couldn’t explain !

1st reading. -70 (L), -27 (R )
2nd reading. 31 (L), 27(R )


Hi, As I think you and I have discussed before part of the problem with diagnosis is similarities between conditions and the strict and intense dividing lines between specialisms. I never found the latter at all helpful. Whenever there are comorbidities that could be involved, it always seemed in my experience that I was always sitting in the waiting room of the wrong hospital department. Then, again, as a vet I used to work for was so fond of saying ‘Common things are common’. Maybe medics find ‘migraine’ is more common than ‘sinus’ disorders. Thinking on the enormity-of it all it would be prohibitively expensive as well as practically impossible to actually eliminate all other possible causes much as we wish they would. Helen


I find that happens quite a lot! haha (sorry to laugh about it).

I think given your history and the big issues they\ve found with your sinuses, your best bet is to pursue resolution of that, then the rest of it will surely settle down.


I’m not in the least bit surprised putting ear drops in your ear would be giving you MAV-type symptoms, It’s happened to me, and worse. After I’d been having episodic MAV attacks a good while not that I recognised them as such til years later I did notice many/most occurred 24/72 hours after eating out in restaurants, one or two over the years occurred seemingly out of the blue but on probably three occasions they occurred following my having wax removed from my ears at the doctors surgery, and inserting ear drops prior to that removal (by syringing with hot water). would often cause problems. I was not 24/7 dizzy at the time. No vestibular symptoms between attacks generally. I once had my ear syringed by an ENT consultant in hospital by suction (vacuum I assume, no water) and that had same effect. The main trouble is until one can settle any ear pressure/unusual ear happenings, I don’t think there’s much chance of getting anybody getting their balance right again, aka stopping the dizziness, and really starting to put MAV behind one. I think that’s crucial and I speak as a person who doesn’t believe my MAV originated from trauma but fluctuating hormones. Helen


Thanks Helen…that’s really good info for me to have as I have a follow up ENT appt next week and I will ask her why the ear drops are causing the dizziness and bringing on a migraine eg have they disrupted the fluid or pressure levels and what is going on with my ear that causes such a reaction when other people can use ear drops without issue.
Thanks for your help


Be interesting to see what ENT says. Guess could be knock on effect from your sinus condition. It’s all so closely linked in. Just look at what happens when one gets a cold. The other thing I thought - how do you insert the ear drops, ie what position is yr head in. Might just be that doing it rather than the actual drops. Helen


Hi Helen
I am putting the drops into my left ear so I tilt my head slightly to the right and put the drops in and keep head tilted for a few mins to let them sink in.
I am in bad shape…my ear feels like I have cotton wool in it - a constant rustling sensation and my hearing is muffled. If I wiggle my ear with my finger it returns to normal for a few minutes and then the sensation and muffled hearing returns. My balance also feels off and my head feels like it’s in a bucket.


You could try putting them in last thing at night, lying in bed though you’ll need to plug it with cotton wool to protect the bedding. Don’t turn back over too soon either. that’s very effective. To eliminate if turning the head causes it you obviously need to try same manoeuvre without insertting drops but far from me to want to inflict any more agony to your existing off balance feelings. Tbh I wouldn’t expect to feel properly balanced until the ears are feeling normal. I’m sure yours will resolve with solving your sinus issues. In the meantime be kind to yourself. Helen


What kind is your tinnitus? Is it a"swooshing sound? If so please see “


Hi @Mav - your experience is very interesting and resonates with me somewhat as I was prescribed Sudafed when I got glue ear when I was in my 40s . My ears eventually cleared -thank goodness- and I never had it again although my ears tend to hate it when I have a cold. Also when I was in my 30s I had a painful,bout of sinusitis which was caused by the hayfever injections I had - now banned I think. You do have to wonder if there is a connection here. I think Dr S has made the right diagnoses for me but I am wondering if I should definitely ask for ENT referral just to check. The ear pressure that has been bugging me for the last ten days has eased off - I took some codeine and 2 hours later felt infinitely better - this makes me think that the pressure was a ‘migraine’ shouting at me! Who knows? :thinking:


Hi Janb
Now that your ear pressure has eased off, did your tinnitus ease off with it? I ask because I am in bad shape with my ear today and I have a constant hissing sound that’s new - tinnitus or as a result of the blocked ear? I have had to make an appt with GP for Friday cos I can’t bear the blocked feeling, muffled hearing and dizziness.


Hi Mav
I am sorry that you are in a bad shape with your ears - the tinnitus can drive me crazy when it is loud or an annoying sound. A hissing sound must be horrible - I hated the pulsating wooshing I had when this all started. A good idea to go back to your GP I think. My tinnitus is still there - it is ever present - but it isn’t as loud today, yet! When my ears were off I noticed the ringing through the night as well and when I was in a very noisy refectory for an hour the ringing was very loud afterwards and I felt very light- headed and off balance and that’s when I took the codeine.
Interestingly it did almost go away about a couple of months ago when I thought I had cracked the MVBD and I was very disappointed when it all came back. I am taking Pizotifen which has got rid of the dizziness - if only I could get my ears to improve! I hope your GP can help. Jan


An interesting website - thank you. Definitely worth a look if you have pulsating, or whooshing tinnitus.


What did you learn by going there?


What I’ve just learnt (curiosity killed the cat they say - I couldn’t resist) by quick peek is that some other people have very informative websites on similar lines to but they aren’t half as well laid out and therefore don’t do themselves justice - shame. That one’s such small print, for once I was glad of the Ipad. Apparently there are many causes of ‘pulsating tinnitus’ many of which can be detected by tests such as scans. Moyamoya is one condition something to do with blocked arteries base of brain. Another signoid sinus deshescence linked to sinuses. Strong links to balance this pulsating tinnitus it seems and surprisingly those involved seem to have similar troubles getting diagnosis as we on here do. Anti epileptic drugs are used with some too it seems. Certainly quite interesting in its marked similarities. One to point out to plp with pulsating tinnitus and electric shocks shooting through their bodies which it seems may have link to thyroid problems.