Read below about unilateral ear itch, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your unilateral ear itch from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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A.I. Health Assistant Causes for Unilateral Ear Itch

The list below shows results from the use of our A.I. Health Assistant by Buoy users who experienced unilateral ear itch. This list does not constitute medical advice.

  1. 1.Swimmer's Ear (Otitis Externa)

    Swimmer's ear, also known as otitis externa, is inflammation, irritation, or infection of the outer ear and ear canal.

    7-10 days

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fever, ear canal pain, ear fullness/pressure, jaw pain, ear pain that gets worse when moving
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Earwax Blockage

    Ear wax production is a normal process, as the body makes wax to protect the ear from infection. Sometimes ear wax can build up and cover the eardrum, which is a thin layer of skin that stretches across the end of the ear canal and picks up sound from outside. Ear wax buildup has nothing to do with poor hygiene, and it is not possible to prevent a build-up by washing.

    Condition likely will go away on its own after 5 days without treatment. However, with pain, dizziness, or feelings of fullness, the earwax should be removed.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    dizziness, dry cough, ear canal pain, ear fullness/pressure, ringing in the ears
    Symptoms that never occur with earwax blockage:
    swollen ear, fever
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit

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  3. 3.Chronic Earwax Blockage

    Earwax production is a normal process, as the body makes wax to protect the ear from infection. Sometimes ear wax can build up and cover the eardrum which is a thin layer of skin that stretches across the end of the ear canal and picks up sound from outside.

    With treatment, the condition will resolve.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    dizziness, dry cough, ear canal pain, ringing in the ears, ear fullness/pressure
    Symptoms that always occur with chronic earwax blockage:
    ear canal pain
    Symptoms that never occur with chronic earwax blockage:
    swollen ear, fever
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit
  4. 4.Allergic Contact Dermatitis of the Ear

    Allergic contact dermatitis is a condition in which the skin becomes irritated and inflamed following physical contact with an allergen. Common products known to cause allergic dermatitis include plants, metals, soap, fragrance, and cosmetics.

    1-2 days

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    ear itch, ear redness, scabbed area of the ear
    Symptoms that always occur with allergic contact dermatitis of the ear:
    ear redness
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Unilateral Ear Itch

  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Is there anything coming from your ear(s)?
  • Q.Do you use cotton-tipped swabs (q-tips) to clean your ears?
  • Q.Do you use a hearing aid or wear earplugs?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our unilateral ear itch symptom checker to find out more.

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Unilateral Ear Itch Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced unilateral ear itch have also experienced:

    • 8% Pain in One Ear Canal
    • 4% Sore Throat
    • 3% Ear Fullness / Pressure
  • People who have experienced unilateral ear itch had symptoms persist for:

    • 33% Over a Month
    • 28% Less Than a Week
    • 22% Less Than a Day
  • People who have experienced unilateral ear itch were most often matched with:

    • 50% Swimmer's Ear (Otitis Externa)
    • 25% Earwax Blockage
    • 25% Chronic Earwax Blockage
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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