4

votes

Earwax and cleaning

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 28, 2011 at 11:04 PM

For as long as I can remember I have been cleaning my ears with a cotton tipped stick ( I know them as cottopn buds, they may have other trade names elswhere in the world). My question is : I am better off not doing this? I know my hair and skin have both improved dramaticly post paleo and post soap/shampoo free. Am I engouraging wax production and/or irritating my ears doing this?

D4d83e7981ca572aaaa19fc620bb54f1

(467)

on February 20, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Actually, maybe I wouldn't worry so much about rinsing it off, since when I spread olive oil on my skin during the shower, rinsing or using a wet towel don't remove all of it anyway, but it seems to get absorbed by the time I've finished drying.

D4d83e7981ca572aaaa19fc620bb54f1

(467)

on February 20, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Actually, maybe I wouldn't worry so much about rinsing it off, since when I spread olive oil in my skin during the shower, rinsing or using a wet towel don't remove all of it anyway, but it seems to get absorbed by the time I've finished drying.

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on September 29, 2011
at 05:31 PM

I call them Q-tips

0e2772604bdb3627525b42d77340538b

(953)

on May 31, 2011
at 02:30 PM

Agree with Lauren. The wax shows up whether it was burned with an ear or not. http://www.audiologyonline.com/articles/article_detail.asp?article_id=1538

782828e745d3ab159ad8f70abbc4094d

(130)

on May 31, 2011
at 01:56 AM

I would be very careful about ear candling. The safety and efficacy of ear candles leave much to be desired.

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 30, 2011
at 11:26 PM

LOL, sadly I know what you mean.

34503e0d0acbea7cfc44d180454571f4

(134)

on May 30, 2011
at 09:35 PM

If you are expecting someone to lick your ear, it should be really clean. I say stick with the Q-tips!

34503e0d0acbea7cfc44d180454571f4

(134)

on May 30, 2011
at 09:34 PM

What OTC wax removal products are there? How do they work?

2f54dbe892ec89b12d1db686568e885a

(919)

on May 29, 2011
at 10:42 AM

how do you dig it out?

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 29, 2011
at 09:31 AM

Im going to give this a try. I sure like minimising the "products" in my life.

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 29, 2011
at 09:30 AM

Nice info, thanks.

6f2c00fcbf48c69f0ea212239b3e1178

on May 29, 2011
at 03:20 AM

Interesting info!

  • Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

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13 Answers

best answer

5
6f2c00fcbf48c69f0ea212239b3e1178

on May 29, 2011
at 12:30 AM

Just run water into your ears while showering and dig out any excess wax. Do this whenever you feel the need. That's all you should need. And one more superfluous product you don't need to spend your money on anymore!!!

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 30, 2011
at 11:26 PM

LOL, sadly I know what you mean.

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 29, 2011
at 09:31 AM

Im going to give this a try. I sure like minimising the "products" in my life.

2f54dbe892ec89b12d1db686568e885a

(919)

on May 29, 2011
at 10:42 AM

how do you dig it out?

34503e0d0acbea7cfc44d180454571f4

(134)

on May 30, 2011
at 09:35 PM

If you are expecting someone to lick your ear, it should be really clean. I say stick with the Q-tips!

best answer

4
A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

on May 29, 2011
at 02:52 AM

Excess Earwax should normally expel itself. Jaw movement during chewing helps it move. Some people who do not chew enough have been known to accumulate wax, which can get dry and irritable. I had this problem for several years due to inadequate chewing, once I have learn't of this, accumulation has become minimal. One should be careful using Q-tips as it can push the wax further in.

6f2c00fcbf48c69f0ea212239b3e1178

on May 29, 2011
at 03:20 AM

Interesting info!

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on May 29, 2011
at 09:30 AM

Nice info, thanks.

2
9474cb276fc971fd5cf3d12dabcf8b23

on September 29, 2011
at 02:10 PM

Has anyone ever tried hydrogen peroxide to clean their ears? I do it when ever I begin to get an earache (which unfortunately is very often because of my allergy to mold which is found every where). It seems to help and I've had my ears examined and they said to keep doing whatever I'm doing because the wax is working properly. I found this information but can't seem to track down the source, anybody know about this?

"In 1928 Richard Simmons, M.D. hypothesized that colds and flu virus enter through the ear canal. His findings were dismissed by the medical community. According to Dr. Simmons, contrary to what you may think or have been taught about how you catch the flu or the cold there is only one way that you can catch the two, and that"s via the ear canal not through the eyes or nose or mouth as most have believed.

Keeping your fingers out of your ears will greatly reduce your chances of catching them, but then again these two are microscopic and can be air-born and may land on or even in your ear. Once they have entered the inner-ear (middle-ear) there they begin their breeding process, and from there they have access to every avenue throughout our body to travel to and to infect and make us sick.

In 1938 German researchers had great success using hydrogen peroxide in dealing with colds and the flu. Their data has been ignored for over 60 years.

It is important to begin treatment as soon as symptoms appear. If treatment is started promptly effectiveness seems to be in the 80% range.

We have found remarkable results in curing the flu & cold within 12 to 14 hours when administering a few drops of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) into each infected ear, (sometimes only one ear is infected) The H2O2 starts working within 2 to 3 minutes in killing the flu or cold; there will be some bubbling and in some cases mild stinging occurs.

Wait until the bubbling & stinging subside (usually 5 to 10 min) then drain onto tissue and repeat other ear. A bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide in 3% solution is available at any drug store for a couple of dollars."

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2002/03/13/hydrogen-peroxide-part-one.aspx

It's also mentioned here: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000979.htm

2
Ffc7e0ecad8e8831b528c5d4921377cc

(942)

on May 29, 2011
at 03:00 AM

I have to use an OTC wax removal product. Otherwise I become nearly deaf. Just running water in my ear doesn't do it. Nor does chewing gum. Using a Q-tip or other object gives me an ear ache.

34503e0d0acbea7cfc44d180454571f4

(134)

on May 30, 2011
at 09:34 PM

What OTC wax removal products are there? How do they work?

2
E2456a3b347d37b526a6b8293faae77b

on May 29, 2011
at 12:09 AM

I think ear cleaning is perfectly ok. I am Chinese, and like most East Asian people, have a dry-type ear wax, which can tickle if I don't regularly clean it out (ie. once a week).

And like most East Asians, I use an ear pick, which looks like a tiny spoon on the end of a bamboo or metal stick, to scoop out the ear wax instead of a Q-Tip. I find that ear picks are more gentle on my ear drums (like a light tickling and very relaxing. Not irritating at all.) and can target certain areas of my ear canal than Q-tips can. Q-tips can be awkward and cumbersome at times; however, they are better for broad sweeping to clean out the whole area. I'm assuming, if you have more of a wet-type ear wax, a Q-tip would be preferred over a ear pick?

I'm not sure if this encourages ear wax production, but do know that ear wax is used to protect the ear drum from dirt and dust. Your body should expel earwax out by itself if you let it be, but I don't like the tickling in my ear and prefer to just clean it out myself.

1
166f449979d83186bd876e8f466d0a69

(1317)

on May 30, 2011
at 04:02 PM

Even if chewing well forces it out or the body does it "naturally", I'm a convert to using Qtips after I went completely deaf last year after going swimming and had to have my ears syringed. I had avoided Qtips all my life because I had heard they could burst the eardrum. Maybe candling or other methods work but do something so your dr doesn't look as horrified as mine did when he dug what LOOKED like a candle out of my ear. Eww.

1
Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on May 29, 2011
at 03:08 AM

I like ear candles, but a naturopath told me to put castille soap in the ears in the shower and run hot water in until rinsed. Some people do accumulate a lot of wax, and it can affect hearing (it gets bad in my son's ears)....

0
59e818af2184847f09c8a63a45adcdbb

on February 21, 2012
at 01:03 PM

I had my ears candled once, there was definitely some yellow gunk in there, from the ear or candle though i dont know.

0
Ceda025d1f349bc43be115a5f9199fb1

(501)

on February 21, 2012
at 10:34 AM

Q-tips are generally not recommended by physicians because they can potentially push wax further into the ear canal. Use a washcloth in the shower to clean the outer ear. If you need to use an OTC ear wax softener and bulb syringe on occasion, that's probably better than Q-tips. Ear candling is ridiculous, burning a cone does not create a powerful "vacuum" to remove impacted wax. (Yes I know true believers will down-vote this).

0
93ae9f2d376e5426e891a9b58d8302fa

(2936)

on February 20, 2012
at 11:15 PM

I don't know if they still market earwax cleaning kits that include a little rubber-ball syringe, but if they do, buy one. Throw out everything but the syringe. That syringe is worth its weight in gold.

All you do is, fill a little Dixie cup with warm water, suck up a syringeful of it, and SQUIRT WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT into the ear (do it over the sink, of course, with the affected ear tipped downwards). Repeat as necessary until the glob(s) of wax come out.

Lotta people try to use the syringe timidly, afraid that a strong stream of wTer might hurt their eardrum. No, it won't hurt. SQUIRT CRAZY HARD!

0
7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on February 20, 2012
at 10:02 PM

I never thought much about this until I had little babies. I was terrified to clean their ears. I asked my Dr. and he said...anything in there will work itself out. To this day I still don't wash their ears. I still use q-tips about once a week on my own and otherwise just my fingernail in the shower.

0
D4d83e7981ca572aaaa19fc620bb54f1

(467)

on February 20, 2012
at 09:57 PM

I read somewhere (sorry I don't remember where) that spreading olive oil in the ears during the shower (and I assume rinsing it a bit after) helps reduce the amount of wax that builds up. I haven't tried it myself, but I also don't know if I would notice any difference since I don't have the problem. If you try it, please let me know if it helped.

D4d83e7981ca572aaaa19fc620bb54f1

(467)

on February 20, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Actually, maybe I wouldn't worry so much about rinsing it off, since when I spread olive oil on my skin during the shower, rinsing or using a wet towel don't remove all of it anyway, but it seems to get absorbed by the time I've finished drying.

D4d83e7981ca572aaaa19fc620bb54f1

(467)

on February 20, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Actually, maybe I wouldn't worry so much about rinsing it off, since when I spread olive oil in my skin during the shower, rinsing or using a wet towel don't remove all of it anyway, but it seems to get absorbed by the time I've finished drying.

0
826c5e2bca3547506098db84277d9f12

(166)

on May 29, 2011
at 05:35 AM

Cotton swabs (Q-tips) are often used incorrectly. They are meant to just swab the outer ear, not to be inserted in the ear to remove built up wax. By inserting the swab in the canal it can possibly pack the wax in tighter. I confess I have done it that way my whole life. My daughter has turned me on to the ear candling...one of the most amazing things I think I have ever experienced! Honestly, I could NOT believe how much was pulled out of the ear. As mentioned above the wax serves a very useful purpose, to protect the ear. But I tend to get a very thick build up and by removing it every few months I feel much better. Not to mention I can hear!!! If you decide to try this, most health food stores carry the candles, or they sell them online. They are very easy to use, but I would recommend looking up online on how to do it correctly.
http://www.bibkit.com/howtoearcandle.html Here is a link for some easy to follow instructions. There are different types of candles but we use the beeswax, with very good results.

782828e745d3ab159ad8f70abbc4094d

(130)

on May 31, 2011
at 01:56 AM

I would be very careful about ear candling. The safety and efficacy of ear candles leave much to be desired.

0e2772604bdb3627525b42d77340538b

(953)

on May 31, 2011
at 02:30 PM

Agree with Lauren. The wax shows up whether it was burned with an ear or not. http://www.audiologyonline.com/articles/article_detail.asp?article_id=1538

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