Like our eyes, our mouth, our nose, and our hair, our ears are just another part that needs to be cleaned regularly. Ears get dirty; no one wants to have music earbuds that are covered in dark yellow wax, and no one wants their hearing stopped up because of it, either. Earwax buildup can lead to conductive hearing loss and ear infections. How do you clean your ears? With much controversy over Q-tips, there is much discussion to be had.
Can You Clean Your Ears with Q-tips?
Technically, you can clean your ears with Q-tips. Many today recommend avoiding using Q-tips to clean ears, and yet many more still use these cotton swabs on a stick to wipe out earwax almost every day.
When your earwax is wet, such as after a shower, then it is more appropriate to use a Q-tip to remove excess earwax. Never insert the utensil too deep into the ear canal; stay around the entrance of the ear canal.
Why Not Clean Your Ears with Q-tips?
The reason it is a bad idea to clean your ears with Q-tips is that it could push earwax buildup deeper into the ear canal rather than remove it. When inserting a blunt object into a narrow space to remove something, it usually only pushes it further. It is most problematic when you have dry earwax or clumped, hardened earwax. In that case, you will want to use an alternative, but much more effective, method.
How to Clean Your Ears without Q-tips
There are multiple ways to clean your ears without Q-tips. Some methods are more effective than others; for example, people do not necessarily recommend ear candles.
However, you can use hydrogen peroxide, mineral oil, baby oil, or an over-the-counter solution. Do not use any of these options if you have a ruptured eardrum. On the whole, it is best to try to soften the earwax before removing it.
Ears are self-cleaning; they drain out earwax and the debris collected in them on their own. Should your ears get a blockage, though, it is wise to use the methods above.
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.