Dealing with Earwax the Right Way Is Critical to Healthy Hearing
Does it feel like your ears are blocked or stuffy, or voices seem to be far away or are muffled? If so, then there’s a strong chance that your discomfort is due to an over-accumulation of earwax.
Left untreated, a buildup of earwax can lead to temporary or sudden hearing loss, feelings of fullness in your ear, dizziness, headaches, balance issues, infections, ringing in the ears and/or ear pain.
Our earwax removal expert at Hear at Home’s Delbrook clinic in North Vancouver provides the safest, most effective way to deal with your earwax challenges so you can enjoy better hearing health.
What Is Earwax and Why Does it Get Built Up?
What Is Earwax?
Cerumen, a.k.a. earwax, is a sticky, wax-like oil produced by glands in your ears that lubricates and cleans out dirt and debris from your ear canal.
Because of the natural benefits it provides and the potential damage you can cause to your ears by trying to dig out earwax, it’s best to let a hearing care professional deal with your earwax the right way.
Excessive earwax build-up can be the result of narrow ear canals, loss of elasticity and aging, the use of cotton swabs to clean ears, living/working in dusty environments and even hearing aid use itself.
Consequently, those who wear hearing aids need to be diligent about cleaning your hearing aids on a daily basis to prevent damage caused by earwax.
Symptoms of Earwax Buildup
Earwax usually clears itself from your ears when you chew or talk, but it can accumulate and cause blockage and irritation, producing symptoms like:
- Aural fullness (stuffiness)
- Muffled hearing
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Dizziness or vertigo
- Balance issues
- Itchiness or irritation in the ear canal
- Decreased hearing aid performance
Our earwax removal specialist not only has the expertise, experience and equipment to deal with your earwax the right way, but if the production of excessive earwax is an ongoing issue, we can also recommend specific products designed to reduce earwax without interrupting or upsetting the delicate balance of necessary earwax production.
How Does Earwax Removal Work?
How Does It Work?
Before earwax removal, your hearing specialist will complete a comprehensive case history and perform a visual inspection of your ear by using a video otoscope. These measures help your hearing specialist view the extent of blockage and determine the safest and most effective method of earwax removal.
The licensed and trained professionals at Hear at Home offer two methods of cerumen removal: irrigation and manual removal.
Irrigation (spray wash system)
A low-pressure irrigation system is used to remove wax from the ear. Rather than spraying water directly at the eardrum (potentially unsafe), this technique allows for the canal to be safely washed instead. As the water exits the ear canal, so will the cerumen; both will collect in a catch basin. This method of treatment is painless and easy; however, it should only be performed on patients with healthy eardrums.
Manual removal (use of a curette)
A thin lit, one-time-use tool is used to gently scoop, pull or extract the cerumen from the ear canal. The curette can be angled and is of varying lengths. This method of earwax removal is often recommended when a patient does not have healthy eardrums.
Are you prone to excessive wax buildup or have you had cerumen removed in the past? If so, Hear at Home recommends that you have your ears routinely checked and cleaned. A discussion surrounding safe and unsafe at-home treatment plans always follows an earwax removal appointment.
At-Home Earwax Removal Measures
Some safe and effective measures to manage earwax build-up at home include the use of softening agents such as mineral oil and following these steps:
- Place 2-3 drops of oil in one ear.
- Lie sideways for approximately 5 minutes to allow for the oil to ‘sit and soak.’
- Wipe any excess oil from the outside of your ear with a soft cloth.
- Repeat on your other ear.
- Continue this treatment for 3-4 days.
This process will help soften the wax so that it works its way out of your ears naturally.
Unsafe Earwax Removal Measures
Contact Hear at Home for Safe, Effective Earwax Removal
If you regularly experience earaches, hearing loss, tinnitus or other symptoms caused by earwax, Hear at Home has the expertise, experience and equipment to safely remove built up earwax and help you control excessive earwax production.
To schedule an earwax removal appointment, complete and submit the adjacent form and we will call you back to set up an appointment to evaluate and safely remove built up earwax.
"*" indicates required fields
What Local People Say
You Asked, We Answer