- Blocked eustachian tubes. A bad head cold
turned into a bad sinus and ear infection. Then, my ears got so congested it was hard to hear. I tried a variety of things. Finally, I went to the ear doctor, and she suggested an "ear popper". It is a small, handheld device which gently blows air into your nose. I guess it equalizes pressure inside and outside the eardrum or some such. After a day, my ears were clear most of the time.