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How to remove earwax
Old 16th August 2018
  #1
Gear Head
 
Redmont's Avatar
 

How to remove earwax

Hi,

I assume most of us take good care of our hearing, and therefore use molded earplugs in noisy environments such as subway/street/concert stage, etc.

The downside of such a protection is that it quickly creates a massive amount of wax which - ironically - hampers us to hear properly and therefore to do a fine musical job.

My question is: how do you remove earwax (without any danger)?

I usually go to my ENT, but this guy uses a mini vacuum cleaner that almost makes me goes deaf each time he uses it near my eardrum. I'm now too worried to keep using this method. He thus tried to pressurize my ear conducts with a ridiculous amount of water until the wax took off, but every time, some water remains stuck near my eardrum and it either leads to otitis or a very annoying sensation that can last for days. Also, paying a monthly visit to the doc costs a lot of money.

I've been to a drugstore to see if they had any product, but frankly, employees don't know sh*t about them and I'm afraid to do more harm than good by using these.

So I'd be curious to know your methods! Thanks!
Old 16th August 2018
  #2
Lives for gear
I think it depends on the person. I've never had wax removed or an ear problem. When I take hot showers I can feel it melting, I'll gently wipe my ear with a tissue.
Old 16th August 2018
  #3
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EvilRoy's Avatar
It depends on how old it is.

Old 16th August 2018
  #4
Here for the gear
I used to have ear wax accumulate when I was much younger, and had to go to the doc every 2-3 years to have it cleared out. He always used a huge syringe filled with water to blast it out. Odd, somewhat uncomfortable sensation, but it usually did the trick with no lasting effects as you've described. I'm convinced all that wax saved my hearing from years of playing in rock bands and going to loud concerts. At the time I gave up both of those things, I got my hearing tested and it was great. Then 30 years later I got a bad cold and some kind of infection, and developed hearing loss and tinnitus in my left ear...so karma caught up with me and I paid for those years of foolishness anyway!


I had tried the oily ear wax removers (ERO?) you get over-the-counter with limited success. But for the last 20 years or so, the accumulation seems to have stopped. I wear ear buds regularly when I swim, and add vaseline each time so they fit nicely - been doing this for many years, and haven't had a problem. Odd how it affects each of us so differently.
Old 26th September 2018
  #5
Gear Nut
Olive oil applied regularly to the ear via dropper keeps the wax at bay. Totally works. It's also good to do for five days or so before getting your ears syringed, softens the wax so the mini pressure washer can do its job more easily.

Cheers,
Jennifer
Old 29th September 2018
  #6
Before attempting to remove earwax, it's a good idea to step into a hot steamy shower for several minutes. The steam helps to soften up the wax.
Old 5th October 2018
  #7
syringing is actually more dangerous that sucking it out, the machines they use are basically harmless to suck the wax out, nothing to worry about.
Old 5th October 2018
  #8
Lives for gear
I use hydrogen peroxide.

You can put some in a cup with a spout, lay sideways and slowly drip it in. Let it sit for 1-2 min and it will start foaming out. Then gently wipe the residue with a tissue.
You can also soak up a cotton ball, gently press down and let that sit in your ear.

I have read that you shouldn't clean your ears too often, you actually need some wax.
Old 14th October 2018
  #9
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If I need to, I will occasionally put cones in my ears and set them on fire.
Look up ear candles. I've never had a problem, although some say it's risky.
On me, it works shockingly well. Clears sinuses too. Don't do it alone though.
Old 14th October 2018
  #10
Deleted 2915a84
Guest
Seriously.

Do NOT stick anything into your ear SMALLER than your elbow.

GO TO YOUR ENT.

They will test your hearing.

After this they will check and clean your ears.

Then they will stick a camera up your nose and check it out going back to look at your throat.

That’s what you do. Don’t stick crap in your ears.
Old 14th October 2018
  #11
Deleted 2915a84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yrdlof View Post
Don't visit doctors. No need since they use the same hydrogen peroxide. They use some concentrated one. You use some weak 3% stuff and have to lie for an hour that;s the difference, cheers
Wrong.

ENTs don’t put hydrogen peroxide into your ear lol

They have specialize tools for carefully removing it.

Plus, you get a complete check-up!
Old 14th October 2018
  #12
Deleted 2915a84
Guest
ENT and Allergy Associates - Wall Street, NY, New York

I don’t know where you live, but ...

I go here a couple times a year.

Dr. Aronzon is a GREAT doctor
Old 14th October 2018
  #13
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stella645's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by guyacier View Post
Seriously.

Do NOT stick anything into your ear larger than your elbow.
Unless you're an elephant the advice is "Nothing smaller than your elbow"
Old 14th October 2018
  #14
Here for the gear
 

For many reasons go to an ENT. Olive Oil has been recommended to me and it's worked great. Once every few months and then it falls out shortly after.

You may have impacted wax or other issues which you should definitely have looked at by a professional. They have other options than the suction device.

(British Tinnitus Association | Ear wax removal and tinnitus)
Old 14th October 2018
  #15
you are supposed to use medical grade olive oil, not regular cooking olive oil, the medical grade oil can be found in pharmacies and is sterilised to prevent infection.
Old 14th October 2018
  #16
Here for the gear
 

Wow, good to know. 2 ENTs recommended standard Olive Oil to me (in addition to the British Tinnitus Association link).
Old 14th October 2018
  #17
Deleted 2915a84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stella645 View Post
Unless you're an elephant the advice is "Nothing smaller than your elbow"
Haha Exactly!! I got that bass ackwards in my haste!

I just know how important hearing is and people dumping crap into their ears makes me anxious.

Go to the doctor. You’re musicians and audio people. Take care of your ears
Old 16th October 2018
  #18
Gear Guru
 
UnderTow's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by stealthbalance View Post
If I need to, I will occasionally put cones in my ears and set them on fire.
Look up ear candles. I've never had a problem, although some say it's risky.
On me, it works shockingly well. Clears sinuses too. Don't do it alone though.
Ear candles are 100% snake oil. They don't remove any ear wax and can cause damage. DO NOT DO THIS!

Alistair
Old 16th October 2018
  #19
Yesterday I tried Hydrogen Peroxide for the very first time ever. The ear wax dissolved like magic. It's kool to hear all the bubbles bursting inside the ear.

From now on, this will be my method.
Old 26th December 2018
  #20
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My GP surgery don't offer any service for wax removal anymore and just refer to the hospital. Earliest appointment I can get in this regard is April, so there's not much option other than going to a private clinic.

Bluestacks TextNow VPN
Old 26th December 2018
  #21
I had my ears tested recently and they told me I had excessive wax. They also said that people who swim regularly don't have this problem.

I never stick anything in my ear smaller than my finger.
Old 3rd January 2019
  #22
Once a week, after having a shower (never without moisture present) I will (with extreme care) use a Q Tip and gently clean, being very cautious not to go deep into the ear canal (to just around the depth a custom in-ear monitor would typically go)

Yes, I have heard the "nothing smaller than your elbow" argument, but I have been doing this for decades without issue. It's completely comfortable. I think the nothing smaller than your elbow argument is going too far (which is sometimes necessary to go too far to help manage stupidity). But if that was truly the case, nobody should use IEMs, and IMHO my IEMs have done more to help save my hearing than anything.

Without doing this my IEMs quickly get their ports blocked by wax.
I have tried other methods of cleaning and they are a nuisance, uncomfortable, or ineffective in comparison.

Everyone's ears and their wax production are different, so YMMV.

Flame suit on.
Old 1st February 2019
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlynDeraney View Post
I've read many at many health journals and even from medical experts that ear wax protects our ear and its functions. It is not harmful. But if you can romve it by using cotton stick.
no just no, never use a cotton stick to remove wax, it can perforate your ear drum and it's dangerous, that is very bad advice.
Old 6th February 2019
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by pencilextremist View Post
no just no, never use a cotton stick to remove wax, it can perforate your ear drum and it's dangerous, that is very bad advice.
Yes, everyone always says that, but IMO that advice is equivalent to a "stupidity disclaimer". It's not really that dangerous unless one is VERY careless about it. Certainly not suitable for kids to try, but for any adult with their head screwed on straight it's perfectly manageable.

Pushing that in so far that it gets past the 2nd bend will immediately trigger a "stop now!" sensation. A little bit of gentle cleaning up to about the depth an IEM goes is just fine, and IMHO necessary for IEM use, otherwise the ports get clogged with wax.
Old 6th February 2019
  #25
the problem with the cotton buds is that you can easily push the wax in there further towards and into/through your eardrum...even being careful, I am only trying to prevent anybody from trying it and stop potential permanent damage, your hearing is very precious.
Old 6th February 2019
  #26
Gear Head
 

nobodys mentioned the ear wax removal kits you can get at CVS with the solution that you let sit in your ear for 5/10 mins and the water syringe? I have bad earwax problems and have been to the doctors multiple handfuls of times because there were big blockages and this is what they recommended.

totally safe and works great. if theres alot you may have to do a couple rounds on each ear
Old 5th May 2019
  #27
Here for the gear
Water pik with warm water. Works flawlessly. Just make sure you turn the pressure way down before you begin.
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