Are Ears Self-Cleaning?

Audiologist demonstrates BTE hearing aid on silicone model of human ear near to otoscope to test hearing

Ears are known to be self-cleaning, but there’s more to the story.

Ears are fascinating things, organs that give us both our sense of hearing and balance. These organs do more for us than we know, helping us perceive the world correctly without even thinking about it. There are many fun facts about ears, such as that they are as identifiable as fingerprints, and that they clean themselves. Are ears self-cleaning? Let’s give an ear to the answer.

Are Ears Self-Cleaning?

Ears are technically self-cleaning! As you swallow, the mechanisms of the ear move earwax along the ear canal toward the entrance. Earwax naturally drains out of the ear. Earwax, also known as cerumen, is not a form of debris by any means. Like mucus in the nose, it traps dirt and dust that enters the ear canals and slowly moves out. It also lubricates the ear canals, doing double duty. So, are ears self-cleaning? With the help of earwax, they are!

Tips to Clean Your Ears

As it is a good idea to blow your nose sometimes to get rid of excess mucus, it is also a good idea to clean your ears sometimes, particularly if you are producing excess earwax. 

Most articles you see online will tell you that it is a bad idea to use Q-tips to remove earwax. This advice applies to people with drier earwax. The Q-tip could end up pushing the earwax farther into the ear canal and compacting it, which could lead to an ear infection and conductive hearing loss. If you have wet earwax that will not compact and decent motor skills, then using a Q-tip is not a problem.

In general, letting your ears get wet in the shower and drying them afterward will be enough to keep them clean. The hot water will also soften the earwax, making your ears easier to clean.

Do You Have Impacted Earwax?

Do you suspect that you have impacted earwax? In some cases, it is not possible for ears to remove earwax themselves. If you have impacted earwax, you can see an audiologist to extract it for you safely.

Trust the Experts at Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions

Need help with your hearing? Clarity Hearing can help. Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions is an independently owned and operated clinic that focuses on quality of care and personalized, friendly service to the surrounding areas of Ellicott City, Catonsville, Columbia. Our Doctors of Audiology are highly trained with advanced degrees and take the time to provide the personalized care and attention that you need and deserve. We provide advanced hearing aid options that are personally calibrated with cutting-edge digital technology to fit your hearing loss, your unique ear anatomy, and your individual listening needs.

You can call us today to schedule a FREE Hearing Protection Consultation at 410-698-6594! For more blog posts, news, and updates, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

This entry was posted on Friday, June 21st, 2024 at 5:31 pm. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions, LLC provides hearing evaluations and tinnitus evaluations to patients in Ellicott City, Columbia, Catonsville, Baltimore, Sykesville and all of Howard, Carroll and Baltimore County. Contact Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions, LLC at 410-698-6594 to schedule a tinnitus evaluation or hearing evaluation.

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