Many people may not give much thought to earwax until they notice a problem. What is earwax and how should you properly clean your ears to avoid build up?
Earwax is made in your ear inside the outer ear canal. This is part of the ear between the outer ear and the middle ear. There are special glands in this part of the ear that make earwax. The scientific name is cerumen. Earwax is constantly being made and helps protect your ear. It keeps your ears from becoming dry and starting to itch. The sticky wax also protects your ear from dirt and other contaminates that may blow into your ear. This wax will catch the debris and stop it from entering deep into your ear where it can cause problems.
Should you clean out your ears?
Most people don’t need to worry about cleaning out their ears. Naturally the wax will make its way to the outer ear where it will either fall out or get washed away when you take a shower. Simply washing your hair and outer ear with a soft wash cloth is all you need. You never want to stick objects into your ear to remove wax. Even though q-tips seem to be perfect for this, they can cause damage. Wax can be pushed back into the ear, your ear can get scratched and you can even damage your ear drum. Its just not a good idea to stick things in your ear and risk damage!
If you notice you seem to have extra earwax in one ear, or you feel like your hearing is being impacted, it may be time to take a visit to your doctor and have them check you out. Doctors have special tools that can be used to clear out excess wax. If they find there is a problem, they can even prescribe medicines that will help to keep wax from building up in the future. Your hearing is precious and you should take care of your ears. If anything seems or feel unusual, please visit your doctor!