Why Do Flies Buzz in Your Ear?

February 14, 2024

When a fly or bug ends up in your ear, it can be irritating, uncomfortable, and scary. But what exactly causes it to happen and how can you get it out?

A bug in your ear is actually quite common. Typically, it’s an insect that gets lost in your ear canal while you’re sleeping or when you’re outdoors. Flies and bugs are attracted to our ears because they can sense the odors from our sweat, breath, and skin cells.

Once a bug lands in your ear, it’s important not to panic. Attempting to remove it yourself could cause further damage to the ear and eardrum and may push the bug deeper in. Instead, try to tilt your head to the side and gently shake. If that doesn’t work, see a doctor -- usually an ear, nose, and throat specialist – for help.

In most cases, the bug will die while inside your ear. However, it’s also possible for the bug to remain alive and try to burrow its way out of your ear. It can cause a feeling of fullness in the ear, discomfort or pain, and even tinnitus. If you notice tinnitus, it’s important to seek medical care immediately because it could be the sign of a perforated eardrum. In that case, doctors will use a device called an otoscope to examine your ear canal and may use suction to remove the insect. It’s also possible that you will need antibiotics to treat the infection.

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