(Natural News) Ear wax may seem disgusting, but it’s there for a reason. An article published on the website AllinaHealth.org explained that it is actually healthy and people need it. Ear wax plays an important role in the protection of the ear canal against physical damage and microbial invasion.
Ear wax is produced in the outer ear canal, which is the area between the fleshy part of the ear on the outside of the head and the middle ear. The ear canal is covered with skin, and this skin has special glands that produce ear wax. It contains enzymes that help prevent bacteria and fungus from growing in the ear. Ear wax also moisturizes the skin of ear canal, preventing the ears from becoming dry and itchy. Additionally, ear wax prevents dust and dirt particles from entering the ear. Ear wax also moisturizes the skin of ear canal, preventing the ears from becoming dry and itchy.
Contrary to popular belief, ear wax should not be removed. The only ear cleaning you should consider is cleaning the outer ear. To clean the outer ear, you may use a damp cloth after showering, but do not use too much pressure when scrubbing. You do not have to worry about ear wax in your ear because it will usually accumulate, dry, and then fall out of the ear on its own, carrying dirt and dust with it.
Ear wax should only be removed when a medical professional needs to get it out of the way to see the eardrum to treat an infection or other ear problems; or when it already causes hearing loss or pain.
However, some people still try to remove ear wax. People may have heard the saying, “you should not put anything in your ears that is smaller than your elbows” multiple times already, but still do it. Putting any items like a hairpin into the ear canal may lead to infections.
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Most people use cotton swabs to remove ear wax, which is strongly discouraged. Cotton swabs were made to clean only the external parts of the ear and not the ear canal. Using these will just push the wax further into the ear. This can lead to ear pain and further blockage, making it harder to remove. According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, this affects nearly 10 percent of children, five percent of healthy adults, and 57 percent of older adults in nursing homes in the U.S.
Researchers from the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio found that cotton swab has already sent thousands of children into hospitals all over the United States. The researchers evaluated cases from 1990 to 2010 and have uncovered some surprising figures. Based on estimates, 263,000 children below 18 were treated for cotton tip applicator-related injuries. This is equivalent to 12,500 cases yearly, or about 34 injuries each day.
Recently, the use of ear candles has been gaining attention. However, ear candles are neither safe nor effective. Using these may burn the ear canal and possibly cause a hole in the eardrum. Ear wax candles may also result in burns to the face, bleeding, injuries from dripping wax, and fire hazards.
It’s best to seek a medical professional first if you feel that you have an earwax problem. They can help you determine if it is a condition to address, a symptom of an underlying condition, or something that can be handled by your body without assistance. Removing wax from your ears aggressively can result in hearing problems or ear canals that are itchy, painful, or more prone to infection.
Read more news stories and studies on ear health by going to Health.news.