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Alternative to Sleeping with Ear Plugs
JibberJabberWhatsTheMatter posted:

My father has difficulty sleeping, and is easily awakened by outside noise.

To combat this, he puts earplugs in his ears ( for the past 10 years ).

Now, he has slight ear infection ( thinks it's because he cleans ear with Q-tip too many times).

Yesterday, I helped put several drops of Hydrogen Peroxide in his ear, and he said he felt bubbling sensation, or as if there was a marching band playing drums in his ear (when the Hydrogen Peroxide interacted with the bacteria )

Question: What is the alternative for sleeping with earplugs? He will not use earplugs till the infection goes away.

Are there noise canceling headphones that are comfortable to sleep with? The only noise canceling headphones I found are Bose, and they don't look comfortable to sleep in?

How about noise canceling, soft Ear Muffs for sleeping. I have been unable to find any from a reputable company. I see ads for Ear Muffs from poorly-known companies, but who knows how they are?

Can you suggest something for my dad. I don't want him to plug ear plugs (there is something so unsettling about plugging things into the ear. Once, I tried to sleep with ear plugs, they were so uncomfortable...)

Thank you in advance!
Rod Moser, PA, PhD responded:
Anything you put in your ears -- earplugs or Q-tips -- can actually increase the amount of earwax that is formed. Over time, this practice can push wax deeply in his ear canal where it may need to be removed by a medical provider, or at least by a thorough lavage (washing it out with warm water). Since you may not have a home otoscope to look in his ears, this is just a blind guess. He does need to give up those Q-tips, though, since they are a main cause of otitis externa (a form of swimmer's ear, even if he doesn't swim).

Now, back to cancelling noise so he can sleep more soundly:

1. Try different TYPES of earplugs. Some industrial types may be better for him.
2. Try those noise-cancelling headphones, but make sure you can return them if it doesn't help. They are expensive. They work better with "masking sounds" or music to lull him to a deep sleep.
3. Try sound machines -- the sounds of water, rain, wind, seashore, etc. is called white noise. The brain will zone into this comfortable background and in a week or so, he will love it. They are easy to find (Radio Shack has them).
4. Lastly, he needs to create an environment for sleep: A comfortable mattress and pillow, a quiet room of a proper temperature. No caffeine or other stimulants (including certain medications if they are known to have this side effect) before bed. Have him get plenty of sun during the day to re-set his biological clock. Go to bed at a proper to relax with that soft music or white noise.

I hope these suggestions help....

By the way, does he sleep with someone who snores?????
JibberJabberWhatsTheMatter replied to Rod Moser, PA, PhD's response:
My dad's ears are better now

He doesn't sleep with someone who snores, he's just very sensitive to noise when sleeping (has insomnia)

Will suggest the sound machine, among other ideas.

Thank you!!!
Rod Moser, PA, PhD replied to JibberJabberWhatsTheMatter's response:
I hope that it helps him. Have him also try some melatonin (health food stores), as well.

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