Earwax is a naturally made gooey waxy substance that is usually yellowish, somewhat sticky and made in the outer ear canal. The outer ear canal has special glands (sebaceous glands) that produce earwax. Its medical terminology is cerumen.

As the cerumen is produced it naturally moves and hardens towards the outer ear canal or aperture where it falls out or is easily removed manually. Nearly everyone produces earwax daily, so the ear canal always is maintained lubricated.

Cerumen has several essential functions. It protects and lubricates the walls of the ear canal. It contains unique elements that battle infections. Lastly, it operates as a barrier to prevent dust, dirt, and foreign bodies from entering your ear.

The majority of people don't need to do anything in particular to remove earwax. If you shower daily and simply run your small finger around the concha of your ear, your ears will essentially clean themselves. I highly discourage using ear swabs (q-tip) or any instrument to poke your ear as you simply are reintroducing the earwax back in your ear canal. Not to mention you can hurt or remove the essential wax required to keep your ear lubricated.

It is recommended to have a yearly check up with your Doctor, ENT or Audiologist. We are not all alike and in some cases your ear will not rid itself of cerumen or it will over produce earwax. If we catch it early, we can often recommend ear drops that are placed in the ear canal that encourage the extra earwax to fall out. Contact our office to schedule a hearing screening or call us today if you have any questions about earwax.