What is ear wax for?

Remove ear wax

How to clean your ears properly!

In order not to disturb the self-cleaning mechanism of the ears, you should not remove the lard from the ear canal. Only the excess visible in the auricle can be carefully removed. It is best to use a soft tissue to clean your ears. If necessary, you can moisten this with a little water and then clean your ears.

You can also use ear drops or sprays for ear care. These products help to clean the ears and can be obtained from pharmacies without a prescription. Ear drops for ear wax and ear wax spray soften the sticky substance so that it can then be easily removed with water and a cosmetic tissue.

These ear cleaners are usually free of side effects. They are carefully inserted into the outer ear and have to act for a few minutes before you can remove the softened ear wax.

Alternatively, you can use natural means to remove the wax. Home remedies are, for example, high-quality almond or olive oil. A few drops of it are enough to soften hard wax in the outer ear. Then you can clean the ears properly.

Do not use cotton swabs to clean your ears!

Please never use cotton swabs or even pointed objects to penetrate the ear canal! Read more about the dangers of cotton swabs when removing earwax in the article Cotton swabs.

What is ear wax?

Our ears have a powerful self-cleaning mechanism. Deep inside the ear canal, the ceruminous glands produce a secretion made up of fats, cholesterol and cholesterol esters - ear wax, or cerumen in medical terminology.

This is a viscous, sticky substance that moves slowly through the auditory canal towards the outer ear when the lower jaw moves (e.g. when chewing or speaking). This removes dirt particles, foreign bodies and dead skin cells. Once on the outside, the cerumen is visible at the end of the ear canal. There and only there you should remove the wax.

In addition to cleaning the ears, the lard does other important tasks: It keeps the ear canal supple and has both an antibacterial and an antifungal effect, making it difficult for bacteria and fungi to spread. This is why you shouldn't remove wax from your ears.

How much ear wax is normal?

How much lard your ears produce varies greatly from person to person. In general, older people make more of them than younger people. Appearance and texture also vary. For example, researchers have found that Caucasians and people of North African descent have light to dark brown, sticky, moist cerumen. In contrast, the lard in the ears of Asians is greyish and has a crumbly consistency.

Ear wax: overproduction and grafting

Some people produce significantly more lard in their ears than others. Seniors in particular have to struggle with overproduction more often. It is not uncommon for a plug to form that completely or partially closes the ear canal. Numerous unpleasant symptoms can be associated with this, such as:

  • Loss or impairment of hearing
  • dizziness
  • Tinnitus
  • itching
  • Feeling of pressure

An earwax plug can also arise for other reasons. Certain anatomical conditions favor plug formation, for example particularly narrow or angled ear canals in which the cerumen can quickly become stuck.

Regular wearing of wax or cotton balls for noise protection and frequent use of in-ear headphones also have a positive effect. Even if you remove the wax with cotton swabs, it can quickly build up and block the ear canal.

Cleansing clogged ears

If a plug has formed in the ear canal, you have to loosen the stuck ear wax. To do this, you should definitely consult an ENT doctor. Removing earwax yourself is not a good idea - you can only be sure that no injuries will occur if you have your ears cleaned by an expert.

The specialist has various methods of cleaning ears:

  • Remove earwax by rinsing: the doctor uses a syringe to bring lukewarm water into the ear, which loosens the plug.
  • Remove earwax by suction: Here, the doctor inserts a very thin tube into the ear, through which he sucks off the plug.
  • Removing earwax mechanically: The plug is pulled out of the ear with a hook or a curette.

Ear irrigation

For more detailed information on removing wax by rinsing, see the article Rinsing your ears.

Cleaning baby ears

Extra care should be taken when removing wax from your baby's ears. Because the little baby ears are extremely sensitive. Absolutely taboo: Remove the wax by penetrating the ears with cotton swabs or other objects. In doing so, the tiny ear canal is almost inevitably injured.

Therefore, when it comes to ear wax: treat baby ears with particular care! They should only be cleaned in the area of ​​the auricle - gently and carefully with a cosmetic tissue. If necessary, you can take care of the delicate skin with a little baby oil. And please don't do that too often Remove ear waxso that the skin of the auricle does not dry out.

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