Clogged ear; cause and treatment

A clogged ear is difficult, you hear almost nothing and the sounds from within, such as your heartbeat and your own voice, can be heard very loudly. If you have ever had a clogged ear, there is a good chance that you will experience it more often. To get rid of it, a visit to the doctor is recommended. The ears can be sprayed out. Oil drops should be applied for about three days in advance to soften the earwax and increase the chance of results.

What exactly is earwax and what is it for?

Earwax is produced in the external ear. Earwax is useful, it protects the skin of the ear canal from drying out from bacteria and fungi, and it traps dirt, soap residue and dust. In principle, the body itself takes care of cleaning the ears. The earwax dries slightly and falls out of the ear canal on its own, aided by movements of the jaws while chewing or eating. However, in some people this system does not work well, for example because the ear canal is very narrow and tortuous.

Causes of clogged ears

  • Soap residue remaining in the ear. Do not wash the inner ear with soap and try as much as possible to prevent soap residue from entering the ears and remaining behind during hair washing. After washing your hair, carefully spray the ears with a gentle stream.
  • Using cotton swabs in the ears. It is not wise to put cotton swabs in the ears. There is a good chance that you will push earwax deep into the ear canal, where it can form a hard plug that can no longer come out spontaneously.
  • Having a narrow, tortuous ear canal.
  • The frequent use of earplugs or a hearing aid, which can cause earwax to be pushed deeper into the ear.


What can you do yourself to prevent blocked ears as much as possible?

  • Do not use soap in the ears, it promotes the formation of earwax and remaining soap residues clog the ears even more.
  • Do not insert objects such as cotton swabs into the ear canal. The earwax is only pushed in deeper. You also run the risk of damaging the skin of the ear canal or eardrum.
  • Soften the ear wax by dripping the ears with salad oil for a few days. Then try to rinse the clot out using the shower.


Have your ears syringed out at the doctor’s office

If you have been suffering from clogged ears for a while and there is no runny ear, an ear infection, a hole in the ear membrane or severe itching in the ear, your doctor can help you get rid of the problem by syringing out the ears . Usually, oil drops must be applied for a few days in advance (or, for example, Earex ear drops or Oroclean). The doctor fills a large syringe with water at body temperature and empties it into the ear canal with some force. This action often has to be repeated several times before the plug of earwax comes loose and drains out of the ear canal with the water. The syringe may be a bit sensitive (because pressure is exerted on the eardrum), but it should not hurt.

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