Pain Behind Ear, Sharp Shooting Pain in Right, Left Ear Lobe, Bone Causes, Remedies

Pain behind the ear can be described as sharp, throbbing or dull. It may be felt behind both ears or on the right or left ear, down the neck and in the skull. The bone behind your ear and the jaw may also be affected. Here are the causes and relief treatment, remedies for sharp shooting pain behind ears.

What causes sharp shooting pain behind ear?

Mild pain at the back of the head and behind ears may be caused by reasons that are not serious. However, persistent severe pain should not be ignored as it could be a symptom of a much serious illness that needs treatment. Here are the causes of sharp shooting pain behind the ears.

Pain behind ear
Sharp shooting pain at the back of the ear and head.

1. Giant cell arteritis

It has got something to do with an inflammation of the arterial lining, which usually leads to a sharp pain that is on left side of the head. Giant Cell Arteritis also affects the arteries that are in the head and also the temples, which is the reason as to why it is also called the temporal arteritis.

Common signs and symptoms that are stating that the throbbing pain are felt in the head is because of the Giant Cell Arteritis which thus include:

  • Tenderness in the affected head area
  • Double vision that is accompanied with reduced visual acuity
  • Scalp tenderness
  • Weight loss
  • Fever

If not treated properly, the condition may cause very serious complications like blindness and stroke.

Take some amount of corticosteroid drugs daily so as to reduce inflammation, but this might lead to mood swing, weight gain and also the weak bones. Besides, Diet and also exercise regularly as it assists.

2. Trigeminal neuralgia

Trigeminal Neuralgia is a disorder of the nerve, which is brought about by several sclerosis or even inflammation of trigeminal nerve, which can be brought about by a swollen blood vessel or even the tumor.

Quite like the Giant Cell Arteritis, it is as well characterized by very severe pain that is felt in left side of headpain behind the ear, having stabbing pain in and also around the face. The condition normally affects older adults, but also the people of all ages can easily become a victim of Trigeminal Neuralgia.

3. Cluster head pains

They are least common and very much painful of all the headaches. They are also known as the “suicide headaches” mainly because of the excruciating pain a person experiences during an attack.

The cluster headaches can as well be episodic having severe pain behind the ear which is normally separated by long pain-free periods; or they can as well be chronic having pain-free periods that last less than 1 month.

Breathing 100% oxygen from a mask is also a traditional method that is used in relieving such pain behind ear. Tylenol, naproxen and other over the counter medication assists to relieve cluster headache. Steroid such as the prednisone are able to soothe inflammation and also the pain.

4. Migraine

Migraines are very much common; in fact, an estimated 30% of all the world population are victims of migraines.

It is usually associated with having moderate to much severe agonizing pain that is accompanied by several other symptoms like having nausea, vision loss, and also the sensitivity to odors or even the light. The pain can last from 30 minutes to a few hours and gets much worse with the physical activities.

5. Meningitis

The pain behind ear that you’re having might as well be an outcome of meningitis which can be brought about by bacterial or even the viral infections. The meninges are tissues that are around the spinal cord and the brain, and the infection normally causes inflammation of the tissues, which can lead to permanent disabilities such as

  • Kidney damage
  • Brain damage and
  • Life-threatening conditions

Besides a very much severe headache, stiff neck is also a very common symptom of the meningitis, which is normally accompanied by vomiting, unconsciousness, loss of appetite, sensitivity to light and others.

6. Sinus infection

Severe head pain behind ear, with discomfort behind or eyes, is usually an indication of sinusitis. The headaches are normally very severe in sphenoid sinusitis, but the frontal sinusitis will lead to severe headache and also pain behind ear also. The pain usually gets worse when an individual bends over.

7. Encephalitis

Encephalitis can lead to headaches. It is irritation and also an inflammation of brain cells, brought about by infections. Encephalitis manifests itself via specific symptoms which includes headache, moderate fever, confusion, drowsiness, unsteady gait, seizures and several others.

8. Brain tumor

Sharp throbbing head pain behind ear may also be due to a primary brain tumor, a mass of the abnormal cells that are growing in the brain. Tumors are able to start from membranes around the brain, brain cells, or even the nerves.

These particular tumors can get rid of the brain cells and the patient has a lot of pressure within the skull. Headaches in this case might happen during sleep, get worse in the morning and come with a lot of confusion, weakness, double vision or even numbness.

9. Tension headache

More than 80% of adults have a tension-type pain behind ear at least once during their lifetimes. Brought about mainly by the tightness in muscles over the scalp and at the back of the neck, patient normally has a band of painful pressure all around the head that lasts for a few number of days.

Even though the headaches are much uncomfortable, they don’t affect the sleep pattern. But you can become very much sensitive to noise and also the bright light. Their intensity is normally at its lowest in the morning and greatly increases as the day progresses.

10. Primary stabbing headache

Also called “ice-pick headache”, it leads to a very severe head pain behind ear that may last between 10 and 30 seconds. It appears like the pain you have if you stick an ice pick into the head.

It may happen right behind the ear at any time of the day or even the night. People who go through migraines are muc likely to have the primary stabbing headache.

11. Other causes of sharp pain in head and behind ears

In addition to the indicated causes, withdrawal effects of the drugs, vascular or even the spinal headache, coital cephalagia and also the hormonal imbalance may also cause the sharp throbbing pain in back of headIf the pain is in the back of the head, this could be because of the mental tension, depression or even the wrong body posture

Sharp pain in right ear lobe down neck

Several conditions can lead to pain behind the ear and also down the neck. According to doctors, neck pain is able to travel to other parts of the body, like the shoulder, arm and also the head thus pain behind ear.

In some other cases, pain in several head structures is able to send pain to the neck. Pain behind the ear is normally associated with the neck pain, as the tendons of most of the neck muscles insert into the mastoid process which is a prominent bony bump that is just behind the ear.

1. Cervicogenic Headache

A cervicogenic headache, which is sometimes known as the cervical headache, can lead to the pain behind ear and also down the neck. According to the studies, cervicogenic headaches are brought about by dysfunction in muscles, nerves or even the fascia in and around the cervical neck, especially the upper cervical spine.

Pain normally radiates from the neck and also at the back of the skull toward the front of the skull, leading to a dull, aching sensation throughout the head, which includes behind the ears.

Possible causes of the cervicogenic headache are the nerve compression between the vertebrae or even the spinal bones, excessive tenderness that is experienced in the neck tissues because of the trigger points which are the hyper-irritable nodules or even the knots within a tight band of muscle and reduced neck range of motion or even the stiff neck.

Most of the cervicogenic headaches respond very well to conservative care methods, like the chiropractic manipulation, acupuncture and also the postural retraining exercises.

2. Mastoiditis

Mastoiditis can cause pain behind ears
Sharp shooting pain behind your ears may be due to mastoiditis. Image source: Singapore General Hospital

Mastoiditis can lead to pain behind the ear and also down the neck. Doctors states that mastoiditis is an infection of the mastoid bone of the skull that is located directly behind the outside portion of the ear. The most common reason behind the cause of mastoiditis is the middle ear infection, also called the acute otitis media.

The infection is able to spread from the ear to the mastoid bone, leading to infected materials to accumulate within the mastoid cells which is a network of honeycomb-like structures that are within the mastoid bone. Infection of mastoid air cells may lead to destruction and also degeneration of bony tissue that composes this particular part of the skull.

Mastoiditis also affects children much more than the adults. Common signs and symptoms that are associated with mastoiditis are the head and neck discomfort, pain and also some swelling that is felt behind the ear, fever, hearing loss and redness over the affected body part.

3. Whiplash

Whiplash can lead to throbbing pain behind the ear and also down the neck. According to the researchers, whiplash is a collection of the symptoms that happen following a rapid flexion and also extension injury of the neck. The most common cause of the whiplash is a rear-end vehicle accident. Whiplash symptoms range from being mild to severe.

Moderate or even severe cases of whiplash normally involve extensive soft tissue damage to several neck structures, like the muscles, ligaments and also the nerve roots–spinal cord offshoots.

Common signs and symptoms that are associated with whiplash are the

  • Neck pain and also stiffness
  • Pain behind the ear
  • Neck ligament sprains
  • Headache
  • Shoulder pain
  • Memory loss
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Fatigue
  • Sleeping problems
  • Depression

The studies also indicates that, although many people who suffer a whiplash injury recover within a period of three months, some people are able to experience residual symptoms that last longer.

Treatment to relieve pain behind ears

  1. Otitis Media treatment

Otitis media normally clears up on its own. Thus, treatment should mainly focus on management of the pain and monitoring so as to ensure that the infection is not getting worse. If the case is severe, you will be required to take antibiotics. If the condition is left untreated, an ear infection may cause hearing complications and also other serious conditions.

  1. Mastoiditis treatment

Treatment of this condition involves the use of antibiotics, frequent ear cleaning and also the eardrops. If the treatment is unsuccessful, you are required to undergo a surgical procedure. If the child develops an acute mastoiditis, they might have to be put up in hospital for specialized treatment by an otolaryngologist.

  1. Swimmer’s Ear remedy

Swimmer’s ear is usually treated by use of eardrops. The doctor might recommend some over the counter pain relievers so as to ease the discomfort, like the naproxen, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen. It is vital to start treatment immediately so as to prevent aggravation.

  1. Relief for temporomandibular Joint Disorders

In some other cases, the symptoms of the condition may go away without treatment. But if the symptoms persist, then the doctor might recommend some of the medications like pain relievers, tricyclic antidepressants or even the muscle relaxants and also the therapies or even the surgery so as to repair or even replace the joint.

  1. Ceruminosis treatment

The treatment is mainly removal of ear wax. A wax softening agent and very special instruments like the cerumen spoon, suction device or even the forceps may be used so as to remove the ear wax. The removal is to be done only by a doctor or a qualified health care provider.

  1. Blocked Eustachian Tube treatment

This condition normally gets better on its own.  A simple exercise is able to assist to open the blocked tubes: close the mouth and hold the nose using the hands, then gently blow the nose. Chewing gum and yawning also assists.

  1. Cure for Swollen Lymph Nodes

Treatment much depends on the cause of the swollen lymph nodes. Common infections are normally treated by use of the antibiotics.

  1. Oral Problems

The doctor can prescribe antibiotics and also the over the counter pain relievers so as to fight the infection and also relieve the pain behind ear. Warm salt-water rinses also assists to ease the symptoms. Maintaining a good dental care habits is also vital to get rid of the oral problem.

Home remedies for pain at the back of ears

Earaches are much uncomfortable. Most are because of an ear infection and the fluid buildup in the middle ear.

Other causes usually include the common cold, blockage in the nasal passage, physical damage to inside of the ear, an increase in air pressure and other factors. Earaches happen more often among the small children than among the adults.

A simple earache can be taken care of easily at home by use of the natural remedies. It’s likely that you’ll have one or more of the readily available remedies in the kitchen.

1. Olive Oil

Olive oil is able to provide fast relief from pain behind ear. It as well serves as a lubricant and assists to get rid of an infection that is in the ear. Olive oil can also be vital in stopping of the buzzing sensations that are inside the ears.

  • Put about 4 drops of lukewarm olive oil as ear drops into the ear canal.
  • Alternatively, you can as well dip a cotton bud in the oil and then put it firmly into the ear.

You can as well make use of the mustard oil in the same way.

2. Garlic

The analgesic and also the antibiotic properties that are in the garlic can greatly assist to reduce earache caused by an ear infection.

  • Heat 1 teaspoon of the minced garlic in 2 tablespoons of the sesame oil. Cool and then filter the oil. Put about 4 drops of the garlic oil in the aching ear.
  • Another option is extracting of the juice out of 3 cloves of garlic and put it into the ear that hurts.

3. Onion

Onion is a readily available home remedies for pain behind ear. The antiseptic and also the antibacterial properties that are in onions work very well in treatment of the problem.

  • Extract 1 tablespoon of the onion juice from grated onions and then heat it over very low heat. Then put about 3 drops of the juice into an affected ear 2-3 times a day.
  • Crush a fresh onion and then wrap it tightly in a clean cloth. Hold the cloth over the infected ear for about 10 minutes. Repeat the process as directed for several times a day.

4. Hot Water Bottle

Putting a moist heat around an infected ear can work as a great pain reliever of the pain behind ear. Simply wrap a hot water bottle in a clean towel and then press it against the aching ear for about 20 minutes.

5. Ginger

Ginger contains strong anti-inflammatory properties that is able to assist in relieving of the pain behind ear. It is an excellent natural painkiller.

  • Extract some juice from a fresh ginger and put it directly into ears so as to get relief from pain and also reduce inflammation.
  • You can as well mix one teaspoon of the fresh grated ginger root with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Leave it to infuse for about 10 minutes and then put about 3 drops of the oil in the ear that hurts.

6. Peppermint

Both peppermint leaves and also the peppermint oil can be applied to soothe the pain behind ear.

  • Put some juice from fresh peppermint leaves in a dropper and put drops inside the ear that hurts.
  • Using a cotton swab, use just a few drops of the peppermint oil externally at an area that is around the opening of the ear. Avoid getting any of the oil inside the ear. You may as well also dilute the peppermint oil by use of the olive oil and then apply.

7. Basil

Due to the anti-inflammatory, antibacterial as well as the analgesic properties, basil is taken as good for relieving pain behind ear.

  1. Crush some basil leaves and then extract the juice.
  2. Put 4 drops of the juice in the hurting ear.
  3. Repeat the process once or twice a day.

8. Neem

Indian lilac, also called the neem, contains potent antibacterial and also the antifungal properties that assist to fight infection. Plus, it contains the anti-inflammatory and also the analgesic effects that assist to reduce pain behind ear.

  • Crush a few neem leaves so as to extract the juice. Put some drops in the ear that hurts as ear drops.
  • Soak a clean cotton ball in the neem oil and then squeeze out any excess oil. Put the cotton ball in the ear. Leave it for about 5 minutes and then discard it.

Repeat either of the remedies once or even twice a day until you obtain some relief.

9. Bishop’s Weed

Bishop’s weed, also called the ajwain is also an effective natural cure for the earaches as it contains antiseptic and also antimicrobial properties.

  • Mix 1 teaspoon of the Bishop’s weed oil with 3 teaspoons of sesame oil and then warm it slightly. Put 3 drops of the oil mixture in the ear that hurts.
  • Heat 2 teaspoons of the mustard oil and then add one-half teaspoon of the Bishop’s weed and a few garlic flakes. Heat the mixture until the garlic turns the color to red. Filter it and then put a few drops in the ear as the ear drops.

10. Hair Dryer

Use of the moist heat through a hair dryer may be a perfect way that can be used to reduce earache.

After taking a bath, do not towel dry the ears. Instead, make use of a blow dryer. Keep the dryer setting on the warm and hold it away from the ear. Let the warm air dry the moisture that is in the ear that hurts. Do not make use of the blow dryer for more than 3 minutes.


  1. Rupam jaiswal

    I am 48 year old women and since last 5 years I’m having the following problem
    I am having pain behind right side of ear on head
    Same time pain in neck at right side some nerves are gives the seveir pain
    Same time severe pain in centre of head at binding place

    Same time one nerves is shown swelling in right leg at down near the foot
    Feeling vomiting

  2. Rupam jaiswal

    Pls advise me good doctor

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