Earwax does have a purpose but when the body produces too much or it becomes impacted, then it is a problem and must be removed. Cleaning the earwax is a gentle process as you want to ensure you do not rupture or damage your eardrum.
The glands in the ear canal, known as the ceruminous glands, produce earwax. Its color and amount produced varies from person to person. The purpose of the earwax is trap dust and dirt.
Tiny hairs in the ear then help to move the wax from the innermost part of the ear to the outermost part until it falls out. The process works to self clean the ear.
When too much wax is produced or it becomes trapped in the ear, then it can cause problems. Symptoms may include an ache in the ear, itching in the ear canal, decreased hearing, and dizziness or ringing in the ears.
Causes of Earwax Blockage
Wax becoming lodged in the inner part of the ear is usually caused by a person. Using items like Q-tips, bobby pins or your finger usually pushes wax deeper into the ear. Also, individuals that wear hearing aids or earplug are more prone to earwax blockage.
- Decreased hearing
- Ear pain
- Plugged or fullness sensation
- Ringing in the ear
- Itching or drainage from the ear canal
At Home Cleaning
You can try any over-the-counter remedy from a drug store. The kits usually come with earwax softening drops that you place in your ear for a few minutes. You can also use mineral oil instead of the drops.
Then you flush your ear out with warm water. You can use a bulb-syringe to help you easily get the warm water into your ear. It is important that you do not use pressurized water as you can damage your eardrum.
Medical Treatment for Earwax Blockage
A doctor can diagnose your ear wax blockages with the help of otoscope (ear scope). Than the doctor may remove your earwax with curette, curette is traditional tools which are look like plastic spoons. Or irrigate your ear with warmed water, sodium bicarbonate, or other prescription-strength eardrops.
When to See a Doctor
It is always good to error on the side of caution and see a doctor if you:
- Tried an at home wax removal and are still feeling discomfort
- Have drainage from your ear
- Hearing loss continues or worsens
- Have had an ear infection recently
- Are losing your balance and cannot walk