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How to Clean Your Ears

Keeping your ears clean can help your hearing aids remain in optimal shape.

Many people can solve simple problems with hearing aids by cleaning them correctly and keeping ears free of wax on a regular basis. When you purchase hearing aids at Audiology and Hearing Aid Center, we provide complete instructions on the use and care of the devices, in addition to information on how to regularly care for your ears.

Do you need to clean your ears?

For the most part, the internal components of our ears are self-cleaning. Our ears produce wax to help coat and protect our auditory system, which stops external debris from entering and damaging our ear canal.

Clean the outside of your ears with a damp washcloth to keep your ears and the inner auditory system healthy. Following this daily recommendation will help remove any dirt or excess wax from entering your inner ear.

How do you remove earwax?

Unless you’re experiencing dulled or muffled sounds, pain in the ear or bouts of hearing loss, chances are, you do not need to remove any earwax. Earwax is an important element in our auditory system’s self-cleaning mechanism.

Wax is not produced deep in the ear canal, but rather, in the outer part of the inner ear, which enables it to protect debris from entering and provides a thin layer to keep ears from drying out. Constant cleaning and removal of earwax may cause your ears to become dry and itchy.

When you experience a blockage due to earwax, it’s often after trying to clean your ears with a cotton swab or even a bobby pin. We strongly advise you to follow the old adage “don’t put anything smaller than your elbow in your ear,” as probing with Q-tips and other materials not only pushes wax deeper into the canal, but can actually rupture your eardrum.

You can attempt to soften earwax at home using a few drops of mineral oil, baby oil or glycerin. Place a few drops in your ear, allow the oil to seep in and mix with the earwax, then lay on that side and allow the wax-oil mixture to flow out of the ear onto a napkin or towel.

If this doesn’t work, don’t hesitate to contact a hearing care professional from our office!

What is ear candling?

Ear candles are not a recommended method for keeping your ears clean or removing wax. Ear candling requires you to insert a 10-15-inch long, cone-shaped, hollow candle consisting of wax and cloth, into your ear canal and then lighting the exposed end. While results are not typical, people believe the flame helps draw the earwax out of the canal.

Ear candles are not recommended due to the hazards associated with their use. From burns to the hand, face or ear, to ear obstruction from the dripping wax, it’s very possible to cause damage to your inner ear if you’re not careful.

When to visit a professional

If you’re experiencing a blockage or excessive amount of earwax, call our offices and let one of our professionals examine your ears! We can determine if you have an abnormal amount of wax, remove it safely and provide you with tips to keep your ears in the best shape possible with homecare! Generally, a simple irrigation or ear syringing can be used to clear the blockage and normal hearing will be regained.

When you purchase hearing aids from us, our health professionals can clean your ears of basic earwax at no charge. Sometimes, there are more complicated issues with ear cleaning, and the ENT will discuss your choices. Most ear cleaning is done in our facility and takes a few minutes.

Clean ears help clean hearing aids

Part of caring for your overall ear health means caring for your hearing aids too. By keeping your ears in optimal shape, this allows your device to remain free of harmful debris and require less maintenance over time.

All hearing aids get dirty and waxy over time. They pick up dirt from the environment as well as from the ears. Keeping them clean, along with your ears, is a simple system we will be glad to discuss with you.