Can Vicks VapoRub relieve earache?

A post suggesting a new way to treat earache has gone viral on social media.

By Sunanda Naik  Published on  10 Oct 2022 6:10 AM GMT
Can Vicks VapoRub relieve earache?

Hyderabad: A post suggesting a new way to treat earache has gone viral on social media.

"'Vicks VapoRub can relieve Earaches or Ear infections. This pain can make daily activities very tough, especially when you are going to sleep. If you want to ease the pain, dip a cotton ball in the gel and rub it gently during the night until the pain goes away," said the post.

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Can Vicks VapoRub cure Earache? Let's find out.


Vicks VapoRub is a basically popular topical ointment that works as a cough suppressant. VapoRub is a topical cough medicine with medicated vapors. It starts working quickly for adults to relieve cough symptoms.

According to a Healthline study, while Vicks VapoRub may help in treating colds and muscle aches, there's no evidence supporting its use for earaches.

Bloggers tout it as a viable treatment for earaches, tinnitus, and earwax build-up. However, there's limited scientific evidence supporting these uses.

In addition, the manufacturer doesn't recommend Vicks VapoRub for conditions affecting the ear.

"Vicks VapoRub isn't safe to use on children below 2 years. Don't put Vicks VapoRub in or near children's ears, as it may cause respiratory distress," it said.

relievesFor further confirmation, NewsMeter sought an expert opinion.

Dr.Hemanth Kumar B, Senior Consultant & HOD, Dept. of ENT & Head and Neck Surgery, Renova Hospitals from Hyderabad said: "Ear has got three parts --external, middle and inner. From the pinna to the ear drum consists external ear, which is lined by a thin mucous membrane with a good blood supply. It's a delicate and sensitive part. It's prone to infections if there is a breach in the continuity of the mucosa or due to a humid environment in the external canal."

Dr. Kumar said Vicks VapoRub is an oil-based preparation meant to apply over the external body surface and not over the mucosal surfaces.

He said that medically there is no proven evidence that the application of VicksVapoRub inside the ear will give relief from pain. "Moreover, as it's an oily preparation so there is a high possibility of the formation of a good nidus for the development of secondary fungal or bacterial infections inside the external ear. By and large, it is not safe to apply products that are meant for use over the external surface. So it's not SAFE to use this product inside the ear," he said.

Therefore, it is evident that Vicks VapoRub is no cure for earache and is extremely unsafe to use on children below the age of 2.

It is also unsafe to use inside the ear cavity without knowing the root of the infection or pain. In certain cases, the application of Vicks can worsen the ache.

Hence, the claim is false.

Claim Review:Vicks VapoRub relieves earache.
Claimed By:Social media Users
Claim Reviewed By:NewsMeter
Claim Source:Social Media
Claim Fact Check:False
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