In recent times the need to clean our ears has become a subject of debate. Medical experts have advice on the matter, and inventors have created ear cleaning products that may or may not help. Here’s an outline on how not to clean your ears.
When Is Cleaning Necessary?
According to medical professionals today, cleaning out your ears of ear wax is not only not necessary, but almost unhealthy. Ear wax is a beneficial part of the human anatomy and is itself, like mucus in the nose, nature’s way of self-cleaning dirt and debris from our system. Ear wax even drains itself from our ears eventually. The only time you must clean your ears is when there is an excessive amount of ear wax build-up. It is best to go to your doctor or audiologist to get this wholly and safely removed.
Don’t Use Cotton Swabs
Along with the above medical advice on when to clean your ears, many people now see cotton swabs as a big no-no for removing ear wax. These instruments have reportedly caused more harm than good. The maxim now is, “Don’t stick anything into your ear that’s smaller than your elbow.” If you must use a cotton swab, it is safest to only use it to clean the outer ear.
Don’t Use Ear Candles
Likewise, ear candles are an infamous method of cleaning ears. Typically, someone will lie on his or her side and insert the bottom of a lit candle into the desired ear. A piece of cardboard keeps the wax from dripping onto the person’s head. In theory, the smoke exhausted from the bottom of the candle melts the ear wax and makes it easier for it to all drain out. This does not work. However, a generous rinsing with a warm towel will make ear wax softer.
Proper Ear Irrigation
Another method of cleaning ears is called ear irrigation. This method does work, if you do it properly. It does not work unless you first soften the ear wax, which can be done with warm water, as mentioned above. Ear wax softeners are available at pharmacies. However, you may want to check with your doctor if it is safe for you to use ones that have hydrogen peroxide as an ingredient. Ear irrigators use water or a saline solution to clean the ears. Use a warm liquid to avoid dizziness. Avoid this method completely if you have diabetes, a lowered immune system, or have a punctured eardrum.
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 personally calibrated with cutting-edge digital technology to fit your hearing loss, your unique ear anatomy, and your individual listening needs.
Come in for a walk-in appointment on Tuesdays & Fridays from 10:00 am to 11:30 am or contact us to schedule an appointment by calling 410-698-6594 or visiting our contact page. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and LinkedIn for more blog posts, news, and updates!