You Have Been Cleaning Your Ears All Wrong

We get too overzealous about maintaining our hygiene, sometimes pushing the Q-tips as much in our ears as humanly possible. We would still be thinking that this is the right way to go about it but that’s not so! Studies have shown how dreadful this habit can be.

Earwax, in fact, protects our ear canals and keeps them lubricated. It is made up of cerumen and has antimicrobial properties that help against infections. However, removing the earwax is a smaller problem. Another, and a bigger problem, is in the way we remove earwax. Studies show that earwax gets jammed too deep in the canal when we use Q-tips that it needs professional help. What’s worse is that this habit can even rupture the eardrum. Wondering how to go about cleaning your ears? Here’s some help.

• Step 1

Take a soft cloth and wet it with water. Use it to clean the outer canal of your ear, that is, the area you can see from outside.

• Step 2

Take baby oil or mineral oil or make any of the following solutions:

– Saline solution with half a teaspoon and half cup warm water
– Hydrogen peroxide (solution of 3% or lower) with water in equal parts

• Step 3

Take a cotton swab and soak in the solution or take a dropper if you are using baby or mineral oil. Tilt your head so that the ear that needs cleaning faces the sky. Hold the cotton swab/dropper above it and drop three to four drops in your ear canal.

• Step 4

Press the triangular cartilage on the outer surface of your ear canal. Massage it gently in a circular motion. This will help circulate the solution better.

• Step 5

Tilt your head on the other side and let the solution drain out. Repeat for the other ear.

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