Earwax

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Last Medical Review: March 27, 2020
Medically Reviewed by Dr. David Costa Navarro
Earwax problems (March 27, 2020)

What is that

Earwax is a substance secreted by glands in the external auditory canal to protect it from the accumulation of foreign particles. Earwax production differs between individuals. Exposure to environments with a lot of airborne dust can significantly increase ear wax production. Daily cleaning of the outermost part of the ear canal with a tissue is generally sufficient for proper hygiene. We recommend using the appropriate ear plugs when working in dirty environments. Incorrect hygiene and/or bad use of muffled sticks cause the formation of earwax plugs that obstruct the external auditory canal.

How it manifests itself

The most common symptoms are: hearing loss, feeling of pressure and fullness in the ear, ringing, ringing in the ear, itching, pain and sometimes dizziness.

What should be done

It is the doctor who must establish the presence of a earwax plug and the absence of contraindications to removal by irrigation. Removing the earwax plug:

  • Instill 2 or 3 drops of one of the earwax earwax solvents in the ear, recommended by the pharmacist, keeping the ear facing upwards and massaging the ear. Close the ear canal with a little cotton. After 20 minutes, irrigate with lukewarm water using a splash.
  • Do not attempt to remove the earwax plug with cotton swabs as it can damage the eardrum or cause infections.
  • It may be necessary to repeat the treatment for several days: in this case it is normal that, following the swelling of the ear wax, a temporary decrease in hearing occurs.

When to seek medical attention

Deafness or pain remains or increases significantly. Fever above 39 °C appears.

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