Earwax Removal

Why do I have earwax?

Not everyone suffers with earwax, so perhaps you’ve never even considered what earwax is and why we have it. It is thought that around 2.3 million people in the UK suffer with earwax issues. Anyone can be affected, but often the elderly and children are more likely to experience problems.

I have earwax

I have earwax


Earwax is made up of cerumen (a substance secreted from glands in the outer ear canal), dead skin cells and hair. The waxy texture prevents the skin in your ear from drying out and cracking. Earwax is a mysterious substance with some studies showing it can fight infection and others showing the exact opposite. Whatever the correct conclusion, we do know for sure that it protects the ear canal from things like bacteria and foreign bodies.

Usually earwax works its way out of the ear on its own, however, if there is an excessive amount, it can cause the ear canal to become blocked. This can lead to hearing loss, a feeling of fullness or even tinnitus.

What is the cause of my excess earwax?

Some people unfortunately just produce too much earwax and therefore, occasionally will need it removed. A few reasons why you may have earwax are:

  • You have narrow or damaged ear canals
  • You have a lot of hair in your ear canal
  • You suffer from a skin condition which affects your scalp or around your ear
  • Your ear canal is inflamed – this could be due to suffering with swimmer’s ear

Earwax removal

A lot of health authority’s no longer offer earwax removal as a “core service”. Unfortunately, this means it’s unlikely you will be able to have earwax removed at your GP surgery. Your GP can refer you to a hospital audiology department if they believe your earwax build up is linked to hearing loss. Often there are long waiting lists for these types of appointment but there are, of course, options for you to have your earwax removed privately if it is causing you discomfort or affecting your everyday hearing.

I have earwax; how is it removed?

The quickest and safest methods of wax removal are microsuction and endoscopic earwax removal. We offer both of these services. Microsuction wax removal is where a small, low pressure probe is put into your ear and it gently sucks the wax out.

Similarly, we also offer endoscopic earwax removal. An endoscope is an instrument that is used to look inside the body. It will be attached to a video monitor for easy viewing – this could be a smartphone, tablet or similar. A direct view into the ear is also possible through the eyepiece of the endoscope. Difficult to remove wax can be tackled more easily than ever before due to the exceptional precision the endoscope offers. This type of earwax removal may reduce the risk of needing any follow up appointments. This is because we are able to have a much wider view of the ear canal and eardrum.

These methods are considered the safest. Others, such as syringing, use high pressure which can lead to complications.

Please don’t use cotton buds!

Visible earwax can be wiped away using a damp cloth, but you shouldn’t ever put anything in your ears to remove wax. People often think that using a cotton bud can help to remove wax but this often creates even more of a problem as it pushes the wax further into your ear.

If you are in need of an earwax removal appointment, give us a call and have a chat with one of our friendly customer service team.

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