Olive Oil Ear Wax

by Sharon Hopkins


Ear wax is a natural secretion of the body that protects the ear from bacteria, dust, and insects. In spite of its natural benefits, build up of too much wax may become injurious to health. The impacting of ear wax in the ear canal may even lead to hearing loss. Therefore, it is important to get the ear wax out of our ears.

The ear canal produces ear wax naturally, and normally, there is no need to remove ear wax as it sheds itself naturally during sleep and when moving the jaws. However, in some people, there is a tendency to for buildup of excessive wax, and this can pose a real threat as it forms a breeding ground for infections and could block the ear canal.

The cartilaginous portion of the ear canal produces ear wax. When ear wax is pushed well into the ear canal, blockage occurs. Overactive glands and aging are the common causes of excessive wax production. People having narrow or hairy ear canals and people having inflammatory skin conditions are prone to have excessive ear wax.  Some of the common symptoms of ear wax problem include decreased hearing, dizziness, pain, and ringing in the ear.

Olive oil is one of the many home remedies that can be used to clean out excessive ear wax.

Home Remedies


There are several home remedies for ear wax. Some of common ones are listed below.

  • Excessive wax can be removed by pouring little warm water in the ears. Drain out the warm water after leaving it in for a few seconds. Ensure to pour only clean and warm into water.
  • You can also put a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in the ear. Leave it in the ear until you hear a popping sound. Leaning in the right direction, you can drain out the hydrogen peroxide. Clean the ear with a swab. Carbamide peroxide, another detergent drop, can also be used to remove wax.
  • Baby oil, mineral oil, glycerin can also be used to soften the wax in the ear. Putting a few drops of baby oil in the ear once or twice a week helps to soften hard ear wax.
  • Olive oil is one of the effective home remedies for ear wax. It softens the ceruman, thereby making the removal of ear wax easier. Softened wax comes out of the ear canal easily and can be wiped with a soft cloth or tissue. Put three drops of olive oil before going to bed. Do this for three to four days. Using irrigation method, removal of ear wax can be done easily. Alternatively, warm the olive oil up to body temperature, and using a dropper, put few drops of warm olive oil in the ear. Leave it in for 5 to 10 minutes. Do not use cotton wool to clean the wax.  Initially, ear drops like olive oil may cause more blockage as the wax softens and expands inside the ear.
  • Irrigation method: After softening the excessive ear wax, removal of ear wax can be done with irrigation method. Warm water is squirted into the ear with a syringe. However, it is wise that this be performed by a doctor as too much water pressure can damage the ear drum and also cause a lot of pain. Once irrigation is done, dry your ear thoroughly using a clean cloth.

Building up of ear wax can be prevented through diet. Foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids can prevent wax buildup. Avocados, ground flax seed, walnuts, fish like salmon, and albacore tuna are good sources of omega 3 fatty acid that helps to mitigate this condition. People with excessive ear wax problem should avoid dairy products as they cause more wax production.

If you are unable to remove ear wax, it is vital to consult a doctor.

References:

  1. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000979.htm

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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