Earwax is often regarded as something that’s unpleasant and needs to be regularly removed, like dirt from under the fingernails and excess oil on the face. However, earwax is not like dirt at all. It is, in fact, essential to ear health.
However, earwax can also accumulate and solidify inside the ear canal. It is itchy and uncomfortable at best, and painful and damaging to your eardrums at worst.
An earwax build-up can result in impaired hearing. If this happens to you, it’s crucial that you seek a professional for earwax removal. They will know how to remove the solidified earwax without causing damage to your eardrum.
What Causes Ear Wax Buildup?
Earwax or cerumen is a natural secretion produced by the glands in the ear canal. This waxy secretion is mainly made up of sebum and is often yellowish or brownish in colour. It gets darker when it collects dirt, dead skin cells and sweat.
When there’s too much of this build-up, that’s usually when your ears start feeling itchy and begging for a thorough clean.
Like most things, an excessive build-up of earwax is bad for your ears. It can accumulate and harden deep inside the ear canal. If bits of solid earwax get stuck, it becomes impacted.
When this happens, the earwax must be removed to prevent or treat problems like bursts of shooting pain. The safest and most effective way to do this is through a clinic that offers earwax removal services.
Signs and Symptoms
Just because your ears feel itchy, it doesn’t necessarily mean you need professional earwax removal. Ears are generally self-cleaning: earwax naturally migrates the dirt and dead skin cells from deep inside the ear to the entrance of the canal. It also coats the inside of the ear canal, acting as a protective layer against dirt and bacteria.
So when do you need to have your ears professionally cleaned? Look out for the following signs and symptoms:
- You experience sharp pain from inside your ear - This could mean that your eardrums have erupted or are infected.
- Your ears feel blocked and clogged - Clogged ears that feel like they’re about to pop because of pressure could be because of infection.
- The colour of your earwax turns darker by the day - This is yet another indicator of ear infection.
- You experience sudden hearing loss - Hearing loss normally happens over a long period of time. If it happens all of a sudden, it could mean that earwax buildup blocked the ear canal and prevented the sound waves from passing through.
- You experience tinnitus and can hear a sharp, ringing sound in your ear - Earwax buildup is one of the most common causes of tinnitus.
- You can feel a buildup deep in your ears - Sometimes the buildup is substantial enough that you can feel it deep in your ear canal. If you keep trying to clean it out with a cotton swab but fail, you might inadvertently push the earwax deeper into your ear.
If you’re showing any of these symptoms, best set an appointment with an ENT professional, or otherwise visit one of our UK clinics and speak to one our qualified audiologists about the benefits of earwax removal through microsuction and what to expect.
Earwax Removal Methods
Let’s take a look at the known ways to remove hardened earwax from deep inside an ear canal.
- Ear Microsuction - This procedure uses a handheld microsuction device: a long, slim, silver metal tube with a flexible hose that’s connected to a vacuum machine. The Audiologist uses the vacuum to gently dislodge any stuck earwax.
- Ear irrigation - For this procedure, ENTs or GPs use a syringe to flood the ear with warm water and flush out the hardened earwax.
- Medication - If hardened earwax is a recurring problem, a doctor may recommend wax-removal medication instead.
Any of these methods can help you keep your ears clean and blockage-free. Please take note that you cannot simply walk into a clinic and ask for an earwax removal procedure; it is also important that you first verify whether the clinic is qualified to perform earwax removal services.
Get Treated at Vista Health
Look no further for a clinic that can perform mucrosuction for earwax removal. Vista Health can provide this procedure by our qualified audiologists at just £75 for both ears. We have clinics at at our Hornchurch, Southampton, Peterborough, Royton and Hampshire clinics.
Get in touch with our team if you’d like to know more about our process in removing earwax.