4 FAQ’s About Ear Cleaning
You’ve probably been told since you were little to keep your ears clean. Oddly enough, it doesn’t take much effort to actually keep your ears clean because they do it on their own!
So if that’s the case, do you actually need to clean your ears? If so, what should you do? What should you not do? Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions associated with ear cleaning.
- Should you use a cotton swab to clean your ears? No. You should not stick anything in your ear that is smaller than your elbow. Cotton swabs are dangerous because they can push wax down into your ear canal causing an impaction or puncturing the eardrum. Additionally, you can scrape the sides of your ear canal or you could push the cotton swab in too far rupturing your eardrum altogether. Cotton swabs can be useful in other parts of your life and daily routine, such as applying makeup or removing nail polish, but they are not useful when it comes to cleaning your ears. They are more harmful than good in this situation.
- Is ear candling an effective way to remove wax build up? No. Ear candling is a very dangerous way to “clean” your ears. It has been shown that ear candling does not actually clean your ears, though it may look like it does. The candle is supposed to pull the toxins, dirt, debris and wax out of your year once it’s lit. However, most of the time, what is pulled out is just the wax from the candle itself. There may be some earwax present but not likely. Candling can cause serious damage to the inside of your ear canal by scraping or burning it, which can then lead to infection.
- Are over-the-counter (OTC) ear cleaning kits good to use? Yes and no. The best advice it to seek the opinion of your hearing care professional. They will be able to advise you on whether or not you need or should use these kits. They will also be able to instruct you on proper selection and use of these kits. It’s also a good idea to have your hearing specialist check your ears out for any kind of problem before using an OTC kit – this will ensure your ears aren’t damaged while using the remedy.
- How do you safely clean your ears? For the most part, you don’t need to worry about your ears. Your ears clean themselves all the time, every day. The wax that they create is not made just to drive you crazy. It is made to clean out any dirt, debris or foreign objects that are present in your ear canal. The wax moves and works its way up and out of your ear canal getting rid of the toxins in your ear at the same time. However, if you do feel that you have a wax build-up problem see your hearing health to have them take a look into your ears in order to determine if there is a wax problem and what treatment they recommend.
Our ears are incredibly complex and sophisticated when it comes to hygiene. If you feel like you need to keep your ears clean, take a dry or damp cloth and wipe the outer part of your ear after your bath or shower. This will help the outside ear remain clean and will remove anything your ear has pushed out of the canal.