Expert advice on ear wax removal and treatments

Ear Wax
Expert advice on ear wax removal and treatments

What is Earwax?

Earwax is a recurring problem to which all of us, to a greater or lesser degree, are exposed, and although it may seem unimportant, it can have grave consequences. We refer to the wax plugs that are formed in our ears and that gradually diminish our hearing. Before knowing how to clean them, you should know that cerumen is a substance produced by the glands within the ear and that has several functions: it helps keep them healthy and clean, prevents the lines lining the ear canals from drying out or cracking, It protects them from dirt and repels water, which causes infections.Most of the time, our auditory canals cleanse themselves. As we talk, we chew and move our jaws, the wax and the skin cells move slowly from the eardrum to the ear hole, where they usually dry out and fall. Normally cerumen does not cause problems, but if it produces an excess that can cause a blockage, and this results in pain or hearing loss.

Watch out!

Cotton buds

Forget them. Problems often arise when we try to clean our ears with our finger or, even worse, with a cotton bud. Although many people use them for that purpose, the companies that make them recommend not using them in the ear canal. The next time you're tempted to use them, take a look at the package label. Removing cerumen with a cotton bud can irritate the skin of the ear. In case you insert the cotton bud is inserted too deep, there is a risk of perforating the eardrum, causing sudden pain, bleeding and a temporary loss of hearing.


They are supposed to remove cerumen and other impurities. The technique involves placing a lit candle, long and thin, inside a cone with a hole and positioning it inside the ear. Research has shown that they are not effective and represent a danger; They can cause burns to the ear and face, leave wax in the canal and also damage the eardrum. This is an old technique and there are better, less dangerous and less painful solutions to your earwax problems.

What the experts recommend?


This is a relatively new and efficient procedure. More and more clinics offer it. In this procedure, the specialist uses a microscope to look inside the ear and a tiny device will suck the earwax out. This technique can be very safe and effective to eliminate persistent blocks in the ear canal.

Ear Drops

Many people use ear drops as the number one option to remove earwax. These can soften or loosen it and allow it to follow its natural course. There are several types on the market and its ingredients contain hydrogen peroxide, sodium bicarbonate or sodium chloride. Although they can be effective, they can also cause irritation in people with sensitive skin.

You can try the olive or almond oils to soften the wax. It is recommended that you warm it up to your body temperature and lie on your side. Once you have the drops in your ear stay in that position between 5 and 10 minutes and repeat two or three times a day to have an effect.

Ear Irrigation

If you have a persistent problem, your doctor may recommend irrigating your ear, a procedure also known as syringing. This technique involves using a tool that flushes water into the ear canal to remove the wax. However, although this method could remove it, it can be painful and even damage the eardrum, so it is best to see an experienced audiologist.



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