Blog Article

Symptoms of earwax build-up and what causes it

Symptoms of earwax build-up and what causes it

Date: 20th September 2023 | By: Les Cavilla

When it comes to our hearing, a build-up of earwax can always cause problems. Normally most earwax will fall out on its own, but in some cases, you may need to book an ear-wax removal appointment. It's important to understand that built-up earwax can cause various issues if left untreated which we will look further into during this article.

We will also aim to help you understand the symptoms of earwax build-up and know when you should seek help from a professional. We will also help you understand what causes a build-up of earwax and simple actions you can take to reduce your chances of experiencing recurring problems.

What is Earwax?

Earwax, medically known as cerumen, is a natural substance produced by glands in the ear canal. Its primary function is to protect the inner ear from dust, foreign particles, and infections.

For those experiencing earwax build-up symptoms, considering the earwax removal service at specialised clinics like the ear wax removal clinic Swindon Hearing Specialists is advisable.

It's essential to know how to remove earwax safely and when to seek professional services, such as those provided by an earwax removal clinic such as Swindon Hearing Specialists. Incorrect removal techniques can exacerbate issues, emphasizing the importance of a local ear wax removal service for comprehensive care.

Understanding Earwax: Its Role and Normal Production

Earwax, known scientifically as cerumen, plays an integral part in maintaining ear health. Produced by ceruminous and sebaceous glands in the ear canal, its primary role is safeguarding the ear.

This sticky substance serves as a protective barrier, preventing dust, foreign particles, and microorganisms from reaching the delicate inner ear. Moreover, it acts as a moisturizer, ensuring the ear canal doesn't become too dry, and possesses anti-fungal and antibacterial properties that help prevent infections.

Under normal conditions, the body has a natural process for earwax production and expulsion. As the skin in our ears grows and sheds, earwax moves towards the opening of the ear, aided by jaw movements like talking or chewing. Once it reaches the outer ear, it usually dries up and falls out.

However, problems like earwax build-up can occur when this process is disrupted. While it's crucial to recognize earwax build-up symptoms, we’ll uncover why earwax builds up in excess for some people in the remainder of the article.

Common Symptoms of Earwax Build-up

Earwax is a natural substance, but when it accumulates in excessive amounts, it can lead to various symptoms that affect an individual's hearing and overall ear health. Here are the common signs indicative of earwax build-up:

  • Hearing Loss: One of the most prominent symptoms, a gradual reduction in hearing can occur as the wax obstructs the ear canal.
  • Tinnitus: A persistent ringing or buzzing in the ears can result from the pressure exerted by the built-up wax on the eardrum.
  • Earache: Accumulated earwax can cause discomfort or a continuous ache in the affected ear.
  • Fullness or Pressure: A sensation of the ear being plugged or "full" often signifies excessive wax buildup.
  • Vertigo: In severe cases, the pressure from the wax can affect the inner ear, leading to dizziness or vertigo.
  • Cough: Sometimes, the pressure on the ear's nerve endings can trigger a persistent cough.
  • Ear Discharge: An unpleasant-smelling discharge can be a sign of an infection exacerbated by the trapped earwax.
  • Itching: Excess earwax can irritate the ear canal, leading to an itching sensation.

If you or someone you know exhibits any of these symptoms, consider seeking professional assistance. Avoid DIY methods and instead, search for an ear wax removal clinic or consider a specialised earwax removal service. Clinics like the earwax removal Swindon Hearing Specialists offer expert solutions tailored to individual needs, ensuring safe and effective care.

Causes and Factors Leading to Excessive Earwax

While earwax plays a protective role in our auditory health, certain factors can lead to its excessive production or insufficient expulsion, causing problems. Understanding what prompts earwax build-up is important for effective prevention and management. Here are the primary causes and factors:

  • Ear Anatomy: Some people have ear canals that are narrow or bend in a way that makes it harder for the naturally produced earwax to get out of the canal, leading to blockages.
  • Age: As we age, earwax tends to become harder and drier, making it more challenging for the body to expel.
  • Hearing Aids and Earplugs: Regular use of hearing aids or earplugs can prevent earwax from naturally exiting the ear canal, leading to accumulation.
  • Excessive Ear Hair: Hair in the ears can trap and hold onto wax, preventing its natural outward movement.
  • Skin Conditions: Skin problems like eczema or dermatitis can lead to an increase in earwax production and even flakes that block the ear canal.
  • Frequent Earphone Usage: Using earphones often can push earwax further into the ear canal.
  • Improper Cleaning: Using cotton swabs or other tools can often push wax deeper into the ear, causing impaction. While many ponder how to remove earwax safely at home, it's crucial to avoid such practices.
  • Environmental Factors: Working in dusty or dirty environments can lead the ear to produce more wax to trap and prevent foreign particles from harming the eardrum.
  • Genetic Factors: Some individuals might be genetically predisposed to produce more earwax.

It is important to remember that excessive ear wax is something that you may encounter a few times over your lifetime, and that is totally normal. Knowing what to do and what not to do is an important factor.

Never put anything in your own ear yourself, and always seek professional advice if you experience excessive ear wax that does not clear after a day or two. Book an appointment as soon as the excessive wax causes you to have to make changes to your day-to-day routine.

Safe Earwax Removal in Swindon and Marlborough

The implications of excessive earwax can range from minor discomfort to significant auditory disturbances. Understanding the importance of ear health and taking proactive measures can dramatically improve your quality of life.

If you're experiencing symptoms of earwax build-up or merely wish to ensure your ears are in optimal health, Swindon Hearing Specialists are here to assist.

With our expert earwax removal service, we provide thorough, safe, and effective solutions tailored to your needs. Don't let earwax complications stand in your way. Book your appointment at Swindon Hearing Specialists today and ensure clear, comfortable hearing for the days ahead.