Why Do My Ears Hurt When I Run? How To Cure It ?

When it comes to running and staying in shape, perhaps you know best. In other words, you might know just how fast you can go, how far, and how consistently, to make sure that you are at your upmost peak shape. Other than that, you are highly passionate about the sport, and you do not waste a day without at least a jog around the block.

That said, you recently have felt your ears hurting when you run—in fact, you ask yourself the question, “why do my ears hurt when I run?” Whether it is a mere tingling sensation to an actual, burning feeling at the tips of your ears, you are not sure just what is going on with your body. (along with the bottoms of your feet and your shoulders). Even further, you are frustrated at the lack of knowledge you know about this phenomenon.

Well, we encourage you not to be frustrated anymore—we are here to help! Read on to learn more in this article about the causes behind ears hurting while running, as well as possible remedies to heal them. We will be answering your burning questions (pun intended) and soon enough, you should be on your way to a pain-free running experience.

Without further ado, let’s get started!


What Ae The Causes Of Ear Pain While Running?

Perhaps you have no idea what causes ear pain while you run, but all the same, it certainly is not the most pleasant sensation to be experiencing in the midst of a hard, intense workout. Believe it or not, there is more than one reason as to why your ears might be hurting, and for that, we offer you a list of the top explanations for it:

1. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

While you might least expect it, ear pain can be caused by problems occurring in the stomach. Weird as it sounds (pun intended), having problems with the gastrointestinal tract can affect other parts of the body in a chain-reaction like way.

More specifically, it happens when stomach acids end up backing up into the esophagus, which ends up causing heartburn. Even further, it can reach up to the throat, causing soreness, and even up to the ears—hence, that is how you can get ear pain. If left untreated, it might lead to ear infections.

2. Blood Vessel Constriction.

Blood Vessel Constriction

 Especially in cold weather, it can cause the blood vessels in your ears to constrict, as means to counteract the chilly effects from the outside temperature. This is apparent in high altitudes as well. For long-distance runners, they feel this sensation even more so, since they are outdoors for a longer time, thereby causing more pain to the ears.

That said, blood flow gets cut off as the vessels constrict, which can lead to the buildup of oxygen inside. This causes pressure and pain, which is certainly not a pleasant feeling to feel.

3. Ruptured Eardrum

Ruptured Eardrum

Under extreme circumstances could you experience ruptured eardrums, which leads to pain while exercising. It is actually not caused by running, but rather by traumatic events such as sudden changes in volume or air pressure, as well as past ear infections. This causes the thin tissue between your ear canal and middle ear to tear, which then gets aggravated when sweat or any other exterior aspects, e.g. air, dirt, enters the ear.

As a result of a ruptured eardrum, you might not only experience ear pain, but also even more severe effects such as vertigo and ringing in your ears, which might become permanent if not treated soon enough.

4. Music Earbuds

Music Earbuds

If you are one of those runners who listens to music while exercising, then little might you know that the type of earbuds you wear can make an impact on your ear health. In other words, many earbuds intrude the ear and, if lodged in too deeply or for too long, they can end up irritating the inside of the ear.

Even further, earbuds create pressure on the ear canal, which also leads to an unpleasant feeling. Plus, earbuds tend to harbor a lot of bacteria from multiple wears, thereby increasing your chances of an infection if not properly cleaned.

What Are Some Ways To Get Rid Of Ear Pain?

Now that you have an idea of the reasons for ear pain while running, it is time to find remedies to relieve the pain. You might be surprised to discover that there are many home remedies that you can do, instead of having to go to the doctor. That said, here is a list of ways you can cure your ear pain:

1. Apply Eardrops

Whether or not your ear is infected, using eardrops can offer instant relief due to its medicinal properties. Granted, it is topical, but it can work all the same to soothe the affected area. Just make sure that you know how to apply them properly, for sometimes, it can create more problems than it can solve.

2. Apply Heat

Especially if you have just finished running in cold weather, then offering some heat to your ear can not only feel good, but contract your blood vessels to normal size, thereby encouraging regular blood flow and overall comfort again. Usually, a warm washcloth or a heat pack (protected by a cloth, of course) should do the trick.

3. Rest Your Ear

If you have an ear infection, then it is highly recommended to hold off on doing high-intensity activities which can otherwise aggravate your ears. Keeping them clean and leveled at all times is the best way to go about it, and they will return to normal soon.

4. Take Pain Medication

The easiest way to alleviate ear pain is with OTC medication, aka pain killers. While they only offer temporary relief, it is better than not having any at all.

More strategies to deal with ear pain can be found in this video: 


Overall, painful ears should not hinder you from continuing your passion in running. By taking the measures to self-diagnose and find ways to cure it, you can ensure that you will be healed in no time.

Comment down below if you have any questions or advice on ear pain. Don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family for some inspiration!


Leave a Comment: