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Ear wax removal

There are cases when earwax accumulates in the ear canal and it cannot easily be removed using only a Q-tip or a similar cotton swab. There are many suggested home remedies for solving this problem, but some of them can be dangerous, but the one described in this article is safe and effective.

About earwax

Earwax is a yellowish, waxy substance secreted from the glands in the ear. It iss composed of secreted oils, dead skin cells and dirt particles, and it is found in every healthy ear. Its purpose is to trap the dirt and the bacteria and to prevent them from penetrating the inner ear, where they can cause problems. According to certain studies, this substance even has antibacterial and antiviral properties.

Earwax is normally produced in small amounts and it is easily removed through showering. In some cases, due to different factors, the production of earwax is increased and the ear easily becomes blocked or impacted. This causes symptoms like feeling of fullness in the ear, tinnitus or ringing in the ear, pain and impaired hearing. If this occurs, the earwax must be removed.

How to remove earwax at home

It is always better to have the earwax removed by a doctor, especially in severe cases of impacted earwax. However, if the problem is only mild or moderate and if there is absolutely no damage to the eardrum, the wax can be removed at home easily and efficiently.

The first step in earwax removal is to soften it using baby oil or mineral oil. Two or three tablespoons of oil should first be warmed over a candle to just above the body temperature. The oil is then introduced in the ear using a dropper, slowly, while lying down on the side, ear facing the ceiling.

After the oil has been dropped into the ear, it is recommended to lie still for 5 or 10 minutes, so the oil can soften the earwax. After this time, the head is tilted on the other side so the oil can pour out.

For mild cases of clogged ears this first step alone can solve the problem, if repeated for several days. If the problem persists, the ear should be irrigated using a rubber bulb syringe.

In this procedure, the first step, with the oil, is repeated, and after the oil comes out, the rubber bulb syringe is filled with warm saline solution or 1:1 apple cider vinegar solution.

The head should be tilted over the sink and the bulb is gently squeezed so the solution cascades down into the ear over the roof of the canal. Irrigation should be repeated until all the dissolved earwax comes out.

After removing the earwax, it is important to dry the ear canal with a low-speed blow-dryer.

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