There are a lot of different causes of hearing loss, although not all of them are related to your age or lifestyle. Sometimes, hearing loss can be fixed by simply removing impacted earwax from the ear canal. This can be difficult and dangerous to do on your own, so it’s important to get the help of an audiologist who can ensure your hearing is clear and obstruction-free.
What is Earwax?
Earwax is secreted by the skin inside your ear canal in order to protect the passageway and prevent bacteria from causing infections. Usually, it’s thin and waxy but can become thick when it builds up. Earwax can become impacted when you clean it out improperly or if your body simply produces more earwax than usual. Many people experience compacted earwax because of Q-tip use which can push the earwax further into the ear and cause it to become stuck. Another common cause of earwax compaction is regular use of earbud headphones or hearing aids. In any case, an audiologist can effectively remove earwax so you don’t experience further complications.
What Happens During Earwax Removal?
If you’ve been experiencing hearing loss or regular earwax impaction, our audiologists will take a comprehensive look at your lifestyle and factors that might be causing it. This way, we can recommend the right steps to take to prevent it from reoccurring. Then, we’ll perform an examination to assess your ears and whether there are any complications we should be aware of. Finally, our audiologists can perform earwax removal using a variety of methods that can be carefully selected for you. One technique includes special ear drops that can break up the earwax and allow it to be drained out. Another technique includes flushing out the ear canal with a saline solution. Earwax can also be removed manually with some special tools.
Why is Earwax Removal Important?
Earwax impaction doesn’t just cause temporary hearing loss— it can also cause uncomfortable pressure and even tinnitus if it’s not addressed. Also, earwax buildup can sometimes be indicative of certain health problems like infections, skin concerns, and even autoimmune diseases. Reoccurring earwax impaction can be a result of your anatomy or your body’s natural earwax production, meaning it’s important to have it regularly cleaned out by an audiologist.
Schedule an Appointment
Earwax removal should always be performed by an experienced audiologist. To meet with our team and learn more about how to prevent earwax impaction, we invite you to contact our Livingston office by calling or filling out our online form.
Frequently Asked Questions
Some people simply produce more earwax than others. However, factors like regularly using earbuds or cotton swabs can cause wax to build up. Earwax is an important part of your ear’s protective system, though, so it’s important not to clean earwax out too thoroughly.
Although you can find over-the-counter methods to address earwax at home, it’s important to check with your audiologist about safe and reliable treatment options. If you’re not careful, you can damage your ears or make yourself prone to ear infections. Additionally, certain methods may work better for some people than others, so your audiologist can recommend the best techniques for you.
Audiologists always recommend that you avoid using Q-tips to clean your ears out. This is because Q-tips can push earwax in if you clean too deeply, causing it to become impacted. If you regularly use Q-tips to clean out your ears, you should stop as soon as possible.
Most audiologists agree that there’s no reason to clean earwax out of your ears unless it spreads outside the ear canal. That’s because earwax is necessary in keeping your ear canals protected from outside contaminants. If you start to have problems with too much earwax, though, you can gently clean it away using a warm washcloth and try using a few drops of baby oil to soften the wax. Don’t ever use small, pointy objects to clean out your ears or use ear candles. If your earwax still feels impacted, you should promptly see an audiologist for removal.