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Why you should leave ear cleaning to the professionals

Is it safe to use at-home otoscopes and ear irrigation kits? Let’s find out

It is generally not recommended to use at-home otoscopes and ear irrigation kits without first consulting with a healthcare professional. Otoscopes are medical devices that require training and expertise to use correctly, and attempting to use them without proper knowledge or training can lead to injury or further damage to the ear.

Similarly, ear irrigation should be performed by a healthcare professional who can properly assess the condition of the ear and determine whether or not it is safe to use. Improper use of ear irrigation kits can lead to perforated eardrums, infection, and other serious complications.

If you are experiencing issues with your ears, it is best to schedule an appointment with a healthcare professional who can properly diagnose the problem and provide appropriate treatment.

When Should Earwax Be Removed?

It is not recommended to use at-home otoscopes and ear irrigation kits. Audiologists and medical professionals have specialized training and equipment to safely and effectively remove earwax buildup. At-home otoscopes and irrigation kits can be dangerous if not used properly, and can even lead to injury or infection. It is always best to consult with a professional before attempting any kind of ear cleaning or treatment.

Using video otoscopes can be particularly dangerous because they require careful control of the instrument and an understanding of how your movements relate to the image on the screen. Additionally, they can provide a misleading impression of the amount of buildup in your ear. Earwax plays an important role in trapping debris and microbes to keep your ears healthy. Too little can cause itchiness and infections, while too much can lead to blockages and discomfort. It’s essential to avoid taking matters into your own hands and instead make an appointment with an audiologist if you’re concerned about the amount of wax in your ears.

At Denver Audiology, we have specialized equipment for removing earwax that ensures a quick, easy, safe, and painless process. Many offices use instruments that were not designed for the ear and can be dangerous or uncomfortable.

General Ear-Cleaning at Home

For general ear-cleaning at home, here are some reccomendations:

  • It is recommended to use a warm, soft cloth to remove normal amounts of earwax at the outer ear, especially after washing or showering.
  • To remove larger amounts of earwax or an earwax plug, you can gently soften the earwax with drops of warmed olive oil, almond oil, water, or a commercial solution.
  • Ear candles are not recommended, as they can cause serious injury and have not been proven effective in clinical trials.
  • Avoid using cotton swabs or any other objects in the ear, as they can cause injury and push wax deeper into the ear canal.

Following these basic guidelines can help keep your ears healthy and clear. If you are experiencing a feeling of blockage or discomfort in your ears, we recommend that you schedule an appointment with us for a consultation and ear cleaning.