Ear question

Every so often (but more so as I get older) one of my ears kinda shuts down. Not tally, but it feels like it powers down. It makes a slamming noise, like a door, only more subtle. Then, there is a high pitched tone that drowns out all other noises. This high pitched tone slowly lowers in volume until it’s gone, and then my hearing is normal. Sometimes it’s the left ear; sometimes it’s the right.

Does this ever happen to you, and what is it? And can you describe it better?


I don’t know.


Is it like a ringing in your ears? If so, it could be tinitus.

I have a ringing in my left constantly. As in “never ever ever stops”. Comes and goes in my right ear. Sometimes it will suddenly increase in perceived volumne, which sort of sounds like (no pun intended) what you are describing.

I do always have ringing in my ears…but I only notice it when it’s totally quiet.

What I’m describing only lasts 30 seconds…and this phenomenon has been around since I was a kid.

American Tinnitus Association

One of the several potential causes is exposure to loud noises.

Lots of info on this problem in the site above. There are treatments for some types.

Exactly this happens to me, and I have a clear memory of it happening when I was four years old, so it’s apparently a permanent thing. Fortunately it doesn’t happen very often.

That’s exactly my situation. I’ve had really quiet tinnitus for as long as I remember. I had a number of ear infections as an infant.

I get the same thing. I have tinnitus, and my hearing really drops off after 8K because of my misspent youth.

But once in a while, one ear or the other will kind of just ‘lock up’, then start ringing like mad, then it fades away over a period of a minute or so back to the normal ‘background’ tinnitus.

I also have this, as well as a constant low-grade tinnitus that I’ve had as long as I can remember. No idea why it occurs.

Yes, I have this as well. Mostly in my left ear.

I’ve not a clue what causes it.

Nasal/sinus/ear congestion from allergies? Sometimes you don’t have to have a stuffy nose to have a congested ear. Mine comes and goes, just part of being generally allergic.