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New guidelines from the American Academy of Otolaryngology advise a let-it-be attitude and warn against removal of the earwax unless it is causing a problem.

Apparently earwax, a bodily emanation we would rather go without, is pretty useful stuff in small amounts. It's bodily function is to serve as a natural cleanser as it moves out of the ear, and tests have confirmed its antibacterial and antifungal properties.

However, too much of an earwax may be trouble. An ear canal plugged up with earwax can cause earaches, infections, and other problems.

You can choose between medical help and do-it-yourself approach to remove an earwax blockage. Avoid using a cotton swab to remove the wax, as it tends to push it back into the ear. Instead, soak a cotton ball and drip a few drops of plain water, a simple saline solution, or hydrogen peroxide into the ear with your head tilted so the opening of the ear is pointing up. Stay in that position for a minute to allow gravity to pull the fluid down through the wax. Then tilt the head the other way and let the fluid and wax drain out. You can also use a bulb syringe to swish out the ear.

There are also over-the-counter eardrops available that break up earwax. Sometimes the eardrops will work on their own. Other times, a few squirts of water with a bulb syringe are needed.

A medical approach is pretty much the same as a do-it-yourselfer approach, it's only done with more expertise, a better view, and better tools.


THANK YOU for your valuable advice:-|  but please allow me to add that ever since I heeded similar advice about 2 years ago, to remove excess ear wax (which I didn't even have) with diluted PEROXIDE, I began to have a 'sticky substance' building up in my ear canals, and now it has become a CHRONIC 'sticky liquid' problem. >:(  So whenever I hear or see mention of PEROXIDE near the ears, I CRINGE.:'(

There's another thread here on 'LEAKY EARS' which I also found most useful.:-)