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Do You Need to Clean Your Ears?

Woman with Hand to Ear

Everyone has a responsibility to take care of their body, and regular cleaning is a vital part of the personal health and beauty processes. However, there is a little ambiguity when dealing with the ears.

So, do you need to clean your ears? Let us provide some clarity.

Is daily cleaning required?

In short: the answer is both yes and no.

As you may or may not know, the internal parts of the ear are self-cleaning. Wax is naturally produced in the ear canal to provide protection from debris and keep the ears moist. However, the ear naturally pushes wax towards the outer ear, which is why wax will leave your ears even when you don’t touch them.

Subsequently, then, a little wax isn’t only normal; it’s essential. Therefore, digging out visible wax with a cotton swab (or any other object) is ill-advised. While the internal parts of the ear do not need cleaning, though, it’s a good idea to clean the outer parts of the ear daily with a washcloth and warm water.

But do remember that the ears are delicate and only a small amount of pressure is needed.

Signs that your ear canal does need cleaning

While most people merely need to clean the outer parts of their ears, there are several situations in which the ear canals do require cleaning too. In most cases, this stems from a buildup of wax.

Wearing hearing aids or using headphone daily can increase the rate of wax production. You can actively reduce the likelihood of this happening by wiping any buds or related items before and after each use. Nonetheless, it’s essential to be aware of the symptoms linked to wax blockages. They include:

  • Tinnitus symptoms
  • Your ears feel blocked
  • Discharge from the ear
  • Ear odors
  • Reduced sound volume

If any of the above symptoms occur, it could be due to a wax buildup, which means your ears need cleaning. However, you must avoid doing this at home, primarily because those signs can be linked to other related issues but also because you may do more harm than good.

Professional ear cleaning

When you have reason to believe that your ears are blocked with wax and debris, it’s imperative that you visit an audiologist who can check your general hearing health while also completing the necessary cleaning routines and maintenance.

If your issues are caused by wax and blockages, the audiologist can use irrigation to flush wax away from the ear in a safe manner. Alternatively, curettes may be used to scrape the wax away (don’t panic; it isn’t anywhere near as scary as it sounds) to ensure that you see immediate benefits.

However, if there is an infection or another source of pain or discomfort, the audiologist can find the right treatment. Furthermore, the audiologist may provide suggestions on showering techniques and hearing aid management to reduce the risks of repeat episodes.

Clean ears are happy ears, but they need professional care. Do not forget it.