7 Home Remedies To Remove Earwax
Earwax (also called cerumen) is a shiny, sticky substance that’s produced by the wax glands in the outer part of the ear canal. It helps prevent ear infection, maintain the acid balance of the ear canal and stop dirt, dust and other substances from getting into the ear canal. Having earwax isn’t a sign of poor hygiene. However excessive build up is unhealthy and you can use home remedies to remove earwax.
When should ear wax be removed?
Earwax helps our ears stay healthy and under ideal circumstances, we should never have to clean our ear canals. There’s a natural process that the body uses to discard earwax. Small amount of earwax regularly come to the ear opening and fall out without any help. However, sometimes earwax may buildup in the ear and other methods have to be used to remove it. Some of the causes of buildup of earwax in the ear canal include:
1. Narrowing of the ear canal as a result of diseases or infections of the skin, connective tissue or bones.
2. Production of a less fluid form of earwax (more common in older people as a result of aging of the glands that produce ear wax).
3. Overproduction of earwax in response to blockage or trauma within the ear canal.
4. Having hairy ear canals.
5. Cleaning your ears with cotton buds and fingertips, can push earwax further down your ear canal.
6. Working in a dusty environment.
What are the symptoms of earwax blockage?
The common signs of earwax blockage include:
1. Plugged or fullness sensation
2. Itching of the ear canal
3. Discharge from the ear canal
4. Ringing in the ear
5. Decreased hearing
List of Home Remedies to Remove Earwax
1. Saline Solution
Mix one teaspoon of salt in around half cup of warm water until it dissolves completely. You should then soak a cotton ball in the saline solution and squeeze few drops of the solution into your ear by slightly tilting your head upwards. Maintain this position for a few minutes so that the saline solution properly gets inside your ear and dislodges the earwax. You should then tilt your head in the opposite direction so that you can drain out the solution from your ear. This is one of the best earwax removal solutions that you can use to get rid of this problem at home.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
Mix equal parts of water and hydrogen peroxide (3%). Ensure that the hydrogen peroxide isn’t above 3%; otherwise, it might be harmful. Pour several drops of the solution into your ear by tilting your head sideways. Hold the solution in your ear for some time and then remove it by tilting your ear downwards. The solution will flow out of your ear together with some earwax. Repeat the procedure until no earwax comes out with the solution. Apart from removing earwax the solution is also an ear disinfectant and will protect you from ear infections.
3. Olive Oil
If the olive oil is cold, warm it up a little until it’s close to your body temperature. Lie down on your side, and use a cotton ball or dropper to put 2 to 3 drops of olive oil into the ear that is affected by earwax buildup. Keep lying down in the same position for around 8 to 10 minutes. You should then stand up, lean over a sink and let the excess olive oil drain out of your ear canal. Finally, use a bulb syringe filled with warm water to flush out both the earwax and olive oil from your ear canal. If the earwax is impacted, you may have to repeat this procedure daily for 1 to 2 weeks. Scientific studies have shown that olive oil has antimicrobial properties which will protect you from ear infections.
4. Coconut Oil
Coconut is effective in removing earwax because it contains medium chain fatty acids which are like sebum and is a natural anti-microbial agent. You should fill a dropper with coconut oil, tilt your head to one side and put a few drops of coconut oil into your ear. Stay in this position for several minutes. Finally, tilt your head towards the other side to let the earwax and coconut oil to drain off.
5. Garlic Oil
Garlic oil is also effective in removing earwax and is a natural antibiotic due to its component allicin. To make the garlic oil solution, add 2 to 3 crushed cloves to a pan containing 1 to 2 tablespoons of sesame or mustard or oil. Heat the oil until the crushed garlic cloves get blackened, allow the oil to cool and then discard the garlic pieces.
Tilt your head to one side and pour a few drops of the garlic oil into your ear. Stay in this position for a few minutes. Finally, tilt your head in the opposite direction and allow the garlic oil and earwax to drain off.
Glycerine can be used in the same way as the other methods that have been mentioned above. Just before bedtime, use an eye dropper to put glycerine drops into your ear. Use a cotton ball to plug your ear and leave it there overnight. In the morning, remove the cotton ball and then tilt your head sideways so that you can remove the remaining glycerine and earwax. Finally, use warm water to rinse your ear.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
A warm solution of diluted apple cider vinegar can also be used to effectively remove earwax. Mix one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and ten teaspoons of warm water. Warm the solution until it’s just above your body temperature. You should then use a bulb syringe, to put the solution into your ear and wait for approximately five minutes for the earwax to melt. You must hold your ear up while doing this so that the solution can enter your ear. Finally, drain the solution and earwax from your ear. Repeat the procedure several times until you have removed the excess earwax.
Earwax protects your ears from fungal and bacterial infections and also helps to keep your ears moist. Therefore, it must be removed only if it’s causing problems such as ear blockage. If you have never had an earwax blockage problem and are not sure what’s causing the problem, visit your doctor.
Read more about other useful and healthy home remedies here.