Ear wax, a natural substance, serves as protection to ears from infections. Ear wax can act as a water repellent and also accumulate dust or other particles. Ear wax accumulates in the outer ear canal. Without ear wax, the ears will be dry, itchy, and prone to damage. Removing ear wax is not necessary, but in some cases, wax can build up and lead to itching, pain, or irritation. Ear wax removal methods such as ear candling have been a popular way to remove ear wax.
Ear candling or ear coning is done by placing a burning candle in the ear canal, making a suction effect of removing ear wax. Experts declared that ear candling is not a safe ear wax removal procedure. The suction effect is false because the candle does not create a vacuum that removes the wax. The wax left inside the candle that is supposed to be ear wax comes from the candle itself and not from the ears. This method also poses a risk of burning the ear canals, blocking the canal through candle wax, piercing the eardrum, and ear infection. Another common way of dealing with ear wax is using cotton buds. While it can alleviate itching, cotton buds can push the ear wax further down the canal. Ear wax is supposed to stay in the outer ear canal, and pushing it near the eardrum can cause problems. Frequent cleaning of ears using cotton buds is not recommended.
In the case of ear wax blockage or other ear problems, one should go to a healthcare professional. You can search the internet for “ear cleaning near me” to book an appointment from the nearest clinic in your area. If you wish to skip expensive treatments and remove the ear wax yourself, this article lists effective ways to remove your ear wax. Before trying out any of these methods, it is essential to determine whether you have a perforated eardrum. A punctured eardrum that has been poured with softener can lead to an ear infection like otitis media.
1. Olive Oil
Using olive oil is probably the best way to remove ear wax. Olive oil softens the ear wax, making it easier to come off. Olive oil has antiseptic components that can help the ears fight infection. To use olive oil as an ear wax remover, pour it slightly warm in your ears using a dropper. Let it sit for ten minutes, allowing it to settle and soften the wax. You can then remove the oil and wax by tilting your head sideways and using earbuds. Another alternative to olive oil is mustard oil.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
Using hydrogen peroxide to relieve ear wax accumulation is proven effective. The effervescent characteristic of hydrogen peroxide makes it easy for ear wax and debris to be removed. To use hydrogen peroxide as ear wax remover, mix it in equal portions with water. Using a dropper, pour the solution to your ears. Leave it for a moment and then tilt your head to drain it out. Wipe the earwax and the solution using a clean towel.
3. Over-the-counter (OTC) Drops
Expert consultation is the best way to remove ear wax, and ear drops widely available in drug stores. If you skipped browsing the internet for “ear cleaning near me,” you can purchase over-the-counter ear drops like Debrox, Similasa, and Hylands. Over-the-counter drops come with instructions inside the package, but typically, it is used by pouring five drops to your ears twice daily in three to seven days. In case of irritation after using an ear drop, consult a doctor right away.
4. Vinegar and Rubbing Alcohol
Using a mixture of vinegar and rubbing alcohol is a time-tested way of removing ear wax. This solution is known to dissolve the wax through alcohol’s drying properties while the vinegar prevents ear infections. Pour an equal amount of vinegar and rubbing alcohol should be mixed in a bowl. Pour two to three drops of the solution using a dropper or a soaked cotton ball while tilting the ear upwards. Let the solution stay in your ears for five minutes and then tilt your head downwards to allow the gravity to pull the wax and solution out.