Earwax is also known as cerumen is a normal secretion of the body. It is helps in the removal of dead skin cells, bacteria, virus and foreign material from the ear canal. Ear wax therefore has a protective function for the ear.
However, there are times when the body overproduces earwax. This builds up and blocks the ear canal. Ear blockage can also happen when one uses a cotton swab for cleaning the ears. The ear bud may push the earwax further into the ear canal causing blockage. Cerumen impaction is the medical term for earwax blockage, and there are some simple remedies.
Symptoms of Blocked Ear from Earwax:
The most common symptom for earwax blockage is a hearing problem or hearing loss. Some other symptoms are pain in the ear, ringing or tinnitus in the ear, and a fullness of the ear or dizziness.
There are a lot of ways of treating earwax blockage at home before you go to an ear wax removal doctor. Here are some of the common and effective ways you can treat your earwax blockage at home.
Ear drops are used to soften the wax and allow the wax to flow out. These ear drops are available from pharmacies. The drops are usually oil based solution. Frequently, it contains carbamide peroxide that is similar to hydrogen peroxide.
However, make sure to follow the instructions mentioned on the packaging. If however the solution irritates the ear or make it worse consult an earwax removal doctor who can be a family physician or an ENT doctor. The ENT doctor are more well equipped to remove the ear wax.
These has been recommenced in online forums and webpages. Hydrogen peroxide will create bubbles of oxygen to dislodge the ear wax. This is however not recommended as the hydrogen peroxide can cause irritation in sensitive individuals and make matters worse. If the individual has ear infection or a perforated ear drum, there will be severe pain and dizziness. If this happens, consult an ENT doctor immediately.
Rubber Ball Syringe and warm water
This is another effective way to clear blocked ear canal from wax to use a rubber ball syringe with warm water. The person should put the affected ear pointing upwards for using the syringe for dripping warm water slowly into the ear canal. Make sure not to forcefully flush the water down as it can end up injuring the ear drum causing dizziness.
After a minute, the person should tilt to the opposite side to allow the water and earwax to drip out from the ear. You need to repeat this process several times. However, those that has ear infection or hole in the ear drum, this should be avoided.
Are Ear Candles Effective?
No, ear candles are not effective. In fact, people should avoid using it for the treatment of earwax removal. Most ear infection specialists do not recommend using candles for wax removal.
Usage of ear candles is also called ear coning or thermal-auricular therapy. It includes covering the hollow fabric cone in paraffin or wax and insert that into the ear as the person lies on the side of the infected ear and then lighting it. A paper plate gets used for the protection of the skin against dripping wax.
They say that ear candles creates suction that pulls the wax out of the ear. But there is no evidence of its working, and the FDA also states that it can lead to severe infection, bleeding, burn injuries and ruptured eardrums.
How to Prevent Earwax Blockage?
Insertion of cotton buds or such other things for cleaning earwax can actually cause to block it. It happens because such objects push the wax further down to the canal.
To prevent blocking the ear from wax, you should not stick anything to the ear. Yes, earwax may feel unpleasant, but it is not necessary to clean it. Most of the earwax will fall out with movement. However, if your body is producing excessive earwax, then make use of OTC ear drops may help. If this continues to be a problem for more than 1 week, see an Ear wax Removal Doctor.