Wax In Ears

Earwax serves a necessary purpose, picking up bacteria, dust, dead skin cells and other foreign substances which may enter the ear. It also protects the eardrum and moisturizes the skin of the outer ear canal. Normal amounts of earwax is healthy as it helps coat the skin of the ear canal. The wax works its way out, drying, crumbling and dropping out in small flakes that tend to go unnoticed. In this ingenious way, the ear is self-cleaning. However, sometimes earwax accumulates and hardens causing deafness and discomfort.

General treatment and recommendation

Never try to clean your ears or remove wax with a cotton bud, or worse still something like a bobby pin. The wax you remove in this way probably would have fallen out anyway, or else you will have pushed any wax further in and risked damaging the canal or eardrum.

If you have a stubborn buildup of earwax you can soften it using some warm olive oil or glycerol for 4 to 5 days. Alternatively, you can obtain “Waxsol” or “Cerumol” drops from the pharmacy. These can be instilled on two consecutive nights. We would not recommend that you use these drops any longer than this, as they can be very irritating to the ears, causing dermatitis. Following the use of any drops, if the wax has not cleared spontaneously, see your doctor who will gently syringe the ears with warm water.


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