We all produce earwax throughout our lives; it’s essential. Despite its unpleasant appearance and texture, it serves a vital role in keeping your ears protected.
Earwax is an all-natural substance used to trap foreign debris from entering your ear canal. It prevents unwanted bacteria and fungi from growing, which can lead to ear infections.
However, too much of a good thing can cause problems, and your earwax is no different. Having too much earwax can do more harm than good and be responsible for hearing issues if left untreated.
Temporary hearing loss, a feeling of fullness in your ears, dizziness, headaches, or even balance issues can all be attributed to excessive earwax buildup.
We have seen many ways to remove earwax throughout our years of serving thousands of residents here in Midland; not all are safe.
To ensure you make the right choice for your hearing healthcare, we’ve outlined the most common ways to remove earwax – ranging from safe and effective techniques to dangerous and harmful to your health.
Over-The-Counter Ear Drops
This method has helped a few people. They are only effective with minor blockages but have proven successful for some.
Over-the-counter ear drops are safe, but if you are experiencing some hearing loss, then your blockage might be past the point of ear drops being effective.
The low price of ear drops can be attractive and may work for patients with minimal wax buildup, but seeking advice from an audiologist can professionally confirm your suspicions.
This wildly popular “technique” is all over the internet. With so many videos showing you how to do it, it’s understandable that people would think it’s safe.
Candling supposedly works by lighting one end of a specialized beeswax candle to create a vacuum and suck the excess wax out of your ear.
Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence that this is effective. The chances of you burning yourself or your hair are greater than effectively removing any earwax.
Any “wax” you see on the bottom of the candle is reported to be residue wax from the beeswax candle itself. We don’t recommend this method for safety reasons.
Just because you have been using something for years doesn’t make it correct.
Cotton swabs have been a worldwide choice for decades now but are the number one cause of impacted earwax. They are responsible for pushing wax deeper into your ear rather than removing it.
Cotton swabs also come with a real risk of doing more physical damage to your inner ear. With no technique to speak of, it’s not always the best idea to go poking around your ear.
Within it, you have many small bones and delicate tissue. You can easily cause irreparable damage if you get too aggressive with your cleanings.
Another popular technique that has been passed down from one generation to another is applying olive oil to your blockage.
This method is much safer than the ones listed above, but its effectiveness is questionable. It may take weeks for the olive oil to loosen the wax enough to fall out – if it works at all.
Always use this in small quantities. The only drawbacks would be if you have any allergies to olives or if you have a ruptured eardrum. Do not use this method if you have either of those conditions.
Like over-the-counter drops, the effectiveness of this method is dependent on the severity of your blockage. This method is likely to at least soften the wax in your ears, which will make for a quick appointment with an audiologist should you wish to have the wax professionally flushed out.
The Safest Method
Whether you have earwax buildup or another hearing issue, it’s wise to have a working relationship with your local audiologist.
Scheduling regular comprehensive hearing assessments is the best way to prevent any damage. We ensure that if your hearing changes, you have someone who knows your history and can adapt based on your personal experiences.
If you’re looking for a safe solution to remove your earwax, you can count on our expert audiologists in Midland, TX.
We are always standing by and ready to help.