EAR WAX REMOVAL FAQ
Here are a few questions we get the most. If you don’t see what is on your mind, reach out to us anytime on phone or email.
Earwax is supposed to be there and is not unhealthy or dirty it is in fact a cleaning mechanism for your ear and is produced by little glands deep inside the ear canal. In theory when these glands produce wax little hairs in the outer ear should push the wax along the ear canal and it should pop out the entrance to your ear.
Earwax or to use its correct term cerumen also lubricates the ear canal which helps keep the ear free from dust and all types of bacteria.
Impacted Ear wax can cause tinnitus or aggravate pre-existing tinnitus. Impacted Ear wax can also cause temporary hearing loss particularly sudden hearing loss.
Possible Symptom of Impacted ear wax:
✓ Pain or ear ache
✓ Loss of hearing particularly sudden loss
✓ Irritation and itchiness
✓ Feeling Dizzy
✓ Ringing in the ears (Tinnitus)
✓ Clicking or squelching sound or feeling (as the wax moves)
If you have these symptoms and your ears are full of ear wax then its possible for these symptoms to reverse once the ear wax is fully removed.
No, far from it. Some ear wax is very dry while some earwax can be wet and sticky. Some earwax can be flaky and stuck to the skin and others can fall into little sticky pieces as you remove it from the ear. If we carry out 12 micro suction ear wax removals in a day you can guarantee that everyone will offer a different challenge. Not only that everyone’s ear canal will be different shapes.
Even carrying out ear wax removal on the same person across both their ears can be a totally different challenge. Your ears are asymmetrical, and your ear wax can have a totally different density and mass. So, one ear could take 10 mins to clean and the other could take 20 minutes.
Ear wax removal by microsuction can be diagnosed and treated the same day.
Sometimes (very rarely) removal of ear wax on the same day is not possible and the number one reason for this is always impacted wax due to use of cotton buds. It’s not always the case that cotton bud use will mean we can’t do it but on the rare occasion we can’t remove earwax its always cotton buds fault! Don’t do it!
Like my grandmother always said, nothing smaller than your elbow should go down that hole in your ear!
Common types of ear wax softening oil:
✓ Earol (our personal favourite as it uses natural olive oil with no nasty chemicals).
✓ Otex – uses hydrogen peroxide and other chemicals to mix with oxygen and break the chemicals up. Although in the main very safe there are some conditions the user should be aware of. Consult your pharmacist or click this link to find out more about otex and if its right for you. The claims that it busts wax completely out your ear are not entirely true in my opinion.
✓ Sodium bicarbonate – as well as sodium bicarbonate there is also the active ingredients of glycerol (e422), purified water and dichlorobenzyl alcohol (preservative). Breaks up ear wax and softens it. Can cause irritation of the skin. Always consult your GP if sodium bicarbonate does irritate your ear canal.
Earol is our personal favourite oil with no nasty chemicals.
Also if your ear wax becomes smooth and runny it may run down your ear onto your ear drum instead of running out your ear like you hoped it would!! Ear wax lying on the ear drum will restrict it movement which will cause sudden hearing loss. Will Hopi candles or ear candles work?
We can get into full scale arguments with this one. People do really like to believe in holistic and mystic medicines. I know I’m one of them! And while so much medicine and mindfulness from the east is good for us Hopi candles is not one of them!
But they go all brown at the end I hear you say!! Yes, they do but that’s beeswax changing colour with the burning of the candle. One of the reasons we invested in a video otoscope for Lanarkshire Hearing Centre was to prove to people who were insistent that Hopi Ear Candles worked that in fact they did not. We would do a video of before and after Hopi candling or ear wax candling & show the patient first-hand the results from their Hopi ear candle experience.
A nice feeling it may be but removing impacted ear wax is not one of its strengths.
Quite simply it’s our domain. We make hearing aid moulds day in and day out. To make an invisible hearing aid or an invisible in the canal hearing aid you need to go very deep inside the ear. This requires a very steady hand and some skill.
Never forget at the end of the ear canal is your ear drum. Your ear drum is a precious instrument and is only 0.1 mm thick! There is no room for error here. Ear wax removal requires great skill patience and a steady hand. Also, as we mentioned before the environment has to be right. Always ensure that thought has went into the environment that will be used to remove that unwanted ear wax.
✓ The procedure will be explained and any questions you may have will be answered. If you’re happy to proceed you will be asked to sign a consent form.
✓ You ears will then be examined to confirm that there is excessive earwax present. You will be able to see this on a screen.
✓ This will then be removed gently using a suction tip. Sometimes drops will be used to soften hard wax and / or a fine carbon fibre hook may be used to dislodge stubborn wax.
✓ Once clear the ear canal and eardrum will be re examined to ensure that they are healthy.
No, you will be aware that your ears are being worked on and the audiologist will avoid contact between the suction tube and the surface of the ear canal.
£40 for one ear, £50 for both and you can pay using a debit or credit card.
No, you can self refer. If your ear history, ear examination before and after cleaning suggest that you should consult your GP or another health care professional, you will be referred.
Yes. Microsuction is recognised as the safest and most effective procedure for removing excessive earwax. It is the procedure of choice in ENT departments throughout UK.
✓ Secondly, we will only use or employ people who have completed an ear wax removal course that Is recognised by either the BSA, BAA or BSHAA preferably all 3.
✓ All new candidates require to have one-month observation of an experienced ear wax removal specialist prior to attending an ear wax removal course.
✓ On completion of the course, all our ear wax removal specialists will undergo a further 4 months fully observed training routine. They will be required to keep a logbook and detail in depth all procedures.
✓ Only after satisfactory completion which generally takes in 100s of ears will they be allowed to practice on their own. The following month which is month 5 they will practice on their own but only with an experienced ear wax removal specialist present in the premises.
✓ All current practicing experienced ear wax removal specialists Kilmarnock Hearing Centre employ will undergo 2 weeks full supervision. This ensures they meet the high standards set out by Kilmarnock Hearing Centre.