Effective Earwax Removal Techniques: A Guide by The Hearing Center MCC

05/30/2024 | Hearing Loss, Patient Resources | 0 comments

When was the last time you cleaned your ears?

Managing cerumen, or earwax, is very important to maintaining good ear health and clear hearing. With a buildup of earwax, you could face hearing loss challenges, trouble staying steady on your feet, and headaches.

Of course, there are some methods of ear cleaning that are much safer than others—and sometimes, only a professional can get rid of an impaction of earwax that even eardrops cannot remove.

To help understand your ears and earwax, we’ve put together a list of some of the best (and worst) ways to clean your ears.

The Dos and Don’ts of Earwax Removal

Avoid Cotton Swabs. While it’s common practice to reach for a cotton swab when you feel earwax buildup, unfortunately this convenient method isn’t very safe. Cotton swabs can push wax deeper into your ear canal and cause damage to your eardrums, impacted earwax, or harm to the delicate inner structures of your ears.

Other tools to avoid when cleaning your ears include anything sharp, ear candles, or your fingers, as these can do more harm than good to your delicate ears.

Over-the-Counter Ear Drops are a good alternative for cleaning your ears; these are readily available at pharmacies and are composed of safe mineral oils, hydrogen peroxide, or saline solutions that will soften the earwax to make for easy removal.

These are a much gentler and safer first step to manage your earwax at home. In order to use eardrops to clean out earwax, tilt your head to let the solution reach your ear canal, gently pulling the earlobe in different directions to facilitate deeper penetration. Make sure to follow the instructions!

After the solution has done its work for a few minutes, tilt your head to the opposite side to let the softened wax and solution drain out.

External Ear Cleaning can also help remove residual wax. Use a warm, damp cloth to wipe the outer ear—but make sure not to insert it into your ear canal.

What We Offer at The Hearing Center MCC

If you’re experiencing dizziness, headaches, discomfort, or hearing loss due to a buildup of wax, it’s time to call your closest audiology professional. Audiologists and healthcare providers not only have the knowledge to help you sort out your issue, but the tools to fix it in-house.

When you come to visit us for a comprehensive hearing assessment, we’ll take a look in your ears with our otoscope to see if earwax impaction could be the cause of a sudden hearing loss challenge. If so, we’ll take care of it for you with a quick ear cleaning.

Earwax management is vital for keeping your ears clear, clean, and hearing right. Home remedies can get the job done, but it’s important to know if you need some professional assistance with your earwax cleaning.

Our team is here to help with all sorts of hearing challenges. Please feel free to request a callback if you’d like some questions answered or have concerns about your unique situation.

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Jennifer LaBorde Au.D., CCC-A

Dr. Jennifer LaBorde is an audiologist who has been in practice since 1999. She has a Masters in Communication Disorders from University of South Alabama, Bachelor’s of Science in Communication Disorders from the University of Mississippi, a Doctorate in Audiology from the University of Florida and holds a Certificate of Clinical Competence in Audiology.
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