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Getting rid of earwax

A lot of people spend a lot of time trying to clean earwax out of their ears. The simplest solution for earwax is to leave it alone. Earwax helps protect your ears against infection by trapping dust, sand, insects and other particles before they can travel deeper into your ears and cause serious problems. Wax is naturally pushed out of the ears by everyday jaw movements like chewing and talking.

Most people only produce small amounts of wax. But some people produce so much that it blocks the ear canal, making the ears feel as though they were stuffed with cotton and causing hearing difficulties. People who have narrow or very hairy ear canals may experience more than their fair share of problems. Some people who don't chew their food properly can get a buildup of wax in their ears.

No digging allowed. When you do suffer from the symptoms of excessive earwax, the urge to remove the stuff may become almost unbearable. But don't try to dig the wax out with your finger, a hairpin, a pencil, tweezers, sharp objects or even cotton swabs. They can push the wax deeper into the ear and even damage the eardrum.

Oil your ears. To remove excess earwax, use an eyedropper to apply a few drops of olive oil or baby oil twice daily. Gently insert a cotton ball in the ear to hold in the oil. The wax should soften up in a couple of days.

Hose 'em out. If your ears don't seem to be expelling wax naturally, you may want to clean them with a bulb syringe, available at drug stores.

Fill a three-ounce syringe with warm water.

Lower your chin to your chest. Pull your earlobe up and back.

Gently squeeze the bulb syringe, and squirt a steady stream of water into your ear canal. Do not squirt water so hard that it causes pain.

The wax should flow right out of your ears into the sink or shower.

Don't attempt to remove excess earwax or use any over-the-counter ear medication if you've ever had a broken eardrum.

     
     

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