Earwax Removal

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We Provide Safer Ear Cleaning and Cerumen Removal

Cleaning the earwax from your ears is not only a part of good hygiene, but it also helps you hear better and enhances the performance of hearing aids.

However, when it’s not done right, your efforts to clean your ears can lead to built-up or impacted earwax.

Earwax, also known as cerumen is a naturally occurring substance produced by glands in your ear canal to moisturize, clean, and fight off infection, but too much of it has a negative impact on your hearing health.

If you need relief from impacted or built-up earwax, you could be asking, “Is there someone who does professional earwax removal near me?”

Inland Hearing has you covered with the safest, most effective cerumen removal and ear cleaning by an earwax removal specialist at the Moses Lake, Omak, or Ellensburg, WA hearing center nearest you.

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Symptoms of Earwax Buildup

Normally, earwax typically clears itself from your ears, but it can accumulate and cause blockage and irritation. Accumulated earwax often produces symptoms like:

  • Earaches or itching
  • Tinnitus (unexplained ringing or noise in the ear)
  • Conductive hearing loss
  • Excessive eardrum pressure

Removal is usually a simple, in-office procedure that can be safely performed in a few minutes by someone who has the right tools and expertise. If the production of excessive earwax is an ongoing issue, we can recommend specific products designed to reduce earwax production without interrupting or upsetting the delicate balance of necessary earwax production.

A man suffering from earache due to earwax blockage
Hearing expert performing earwax removal

What NOT to Do When You Experience Earwax Buildup

Cotton swabs are the most common instruments used by people to remove earwax buildup. They usually just make things worse by pushing the blockage further down the canal, risking damage to the ear.

Potential harm to your eardrum by accidentally pushing the cotton swab too far is one of the most common risks of attempting to remove earwax yourself.

Reserve cotton swabs to clean the outer portion of your ear canal rather than going too deep.

At-Home Earwax Removal

There are plenty of at-home earwax removal kits available in your local drugstore. However, not all of them are both safe and effective. Earwax removal kits typically include a liquid designed to soften the earwax and a small rubber bulb syringe.

The liquid is applied into your ear canal, allowed to sit for a period of time, and then you use the bulb syringe to gently flush your ears and the earwax from your ears.

Before using an at-home kit, you should speak with a hearing care professional because not all formulas provide the proper chemical balance to help remove earwax without doing damage to your ear canal, and at-home removal might not be the right choice for individuals with certain types of conditions.

A man performing at-home earwax removal remedy

Safe In-Office Earwax Removal

Irrigation is the go-to method for safely removing earwax in our office. Rather than going straight in to dig out the impacted cerumen, we use warm water to help soften the wax and flush it out of your ear canal.

Should there be stubborn bits of wax in your ears, we’ll draw it out with a curette. Keep in mind that both our vantage point and special training make this safe and you shouldn’t be doing this at home.

When excessive earwax is an ongoing problem, especially with those who use hearing aids, we have access to a stronger earwax removal formula with carbamide peroxide, which we sometimes use in combination with irrigation to break up stubborn buildup more effectively. We can also prescribe products with the right formulation for you to use at home.

Tips for In-Home Earwax Removal

Maintaining a proper balance of earwax is a necessary part of ear health. To help keep your ears healthy, avoid the following:

  • Digging inside your ears with cotton swabs or any other long, thin device (we shudder when we think of what that could be).
  • Be careful with OTC earwax removal kits. Not all are safe and effective, and improper use can upset the balance of necessary earwax production.

Instead, if you need instant relief from impacted earwax at home, you can follow these steps:

  • Place 2-3 drops of mineral or olive oil in one ear.
    Lie sideways for approximately 5 minutes to allow for the oil to “sit and soak.”
  • Wipe any excess oil from the outside of your ear with a soft cloth.
  • Repeat on your other ear.
  • Continue this treatment for 3-4 days.

This process will help soften the wax so that it naturally works its way out of your ears.

Frequently Asked Questions about Earwax Removal

Q. What Is Earwax?

Cerumen, or earwax, is nature’s way of keeping your ears healthy. It works to clear out dirt, fungus, bacteria, and other debris from your ear canal as well as lubricates your ears and provides an antimicrobial defense against bacteria and fungus.

Q. What Are the Consequences of Too Much Earwax?

Built-up or impacted earwax can produce:

  • Earaches or itching
  • Tinnitus (unexplained ringing or noise in the ear)
  • Conductive hearing loss
  • Excessive eardrum pressure

Q. What Causes Earwax Buildup and Impacted Earwax?

Earwax buildup can be the result of narrow ear canals, loss of elasticity from aging, living/working in dusty environments, and the use of hearing aids. However, the most common cause of impacted earwax is the use of cotton swabs for extensive ear hygiene.

Rather than clearing out the earwax, using cotton swabs usually pushes the cerumen deeper into the ear canal and packs it tighter, making things worse than before and even running the risk of damage to your eardrum.

Q. When Should I Seek Help for Earwax Removal?

If you’re experiencing stuffiness, aching, muffled hearing, or any of the other symptoms of impacted earwax, it is a sign that you should seek professional help for earwax removal. You should also see a hearing care professional if your ears produce excessive amounts of earwax, especially if you wear hearing aids.

Q. Is Earwax Removal Painful?

The primary means of earwax removal is irrigation. Your earwax removal specialist will inject warm water into the ear canal, which will help it to soften and then fall out on its own. Bits that are more stubborn can be easily and painlessly removed by a trained professional using a curette.

Q. Does Earwax Removal Help Hearing?

We have individuals who come to us believing that they are losing their hearing only to discover that their problem is impacted earwax. Once it’s removed, they hear better instantly.
Dan Morehouse, HIS of Inland Hearing Aids, Inc. with a patient