The next time you notice that you are saying “excuse me” or more likely “huh” to your friends too much because you can’t hear what they are saying, think about the idea that whatever you are suffering from might be something to look into and not a figment of your imagination. Don’t ignore it and let it slide, because minor ear problems can easily turn into something serious. Remember, you might have an infection and your ear is close to your brain! You don’t want whatever is bothering you to get in there do you? While an infection is one of the most serious of the possible problems, chances are it’s something much less frightening than that.
Hearing problems are commoner than you think. They can be caused by lots of different things, including loud noises (yes, turn the music down please), injury, infection, and more. Lot’s of people have hearing problems and most of these problems are quite easy to take care of. If you are having trouble hearing and the onset was sudden, then chances are that you have some wax buildup in your ear canal. Also, if you are suffering from itchiness, tinnitus (ringing in your ears), or dizziness, etc, those are also signs that you could possibly have wax buildup in your ears. This is something you can clear up fairly easily most of the time. And you must keep in mind that it is quite normal to have ear wax. If you didn’t have it your ear would end up being one unhealthy place! One of the reasons it is there is to protect your ear from invaders of the bacterial and viral type, to keep out the dirt, and also to act as a water-repellent. It’s just a problem when it is produced in an over abundance, which can sometimes be natural (for some people), and sometimes it is a response to a problem in the ear.
Did you know that those cotton buds that you are so in love with are really not so great after all? You should really be cleaning your outer ears with plain (or perhaps mildly soapy) water (when you bathe or shower), or, at most, a towel or tissue on the outer part of your ear. But, you’re not supposed to be shoving those cotton buds halfway (or all the way) into your ear to coax that earwax out. All that does is poke the wax in deeper and can cause possible problems. Some people have even caused eardrum perforations by using cotton ear buds too vigorously.
One of the problems that can occur in your ear is that the ear wax can get impacted in the ear, and sometimes it goes up against the eardrum and causes further problems. This can happen due to over zealous cleaning with ear buds, or naturally. This is not usually serious but can cause hearing loss, which can often be quite severe. When this happens you need to do something right away. The doctor will normally give you ear drops right away to begin breaking down the earwax. Then, when you go back several days later, they can use a vacuum machine to draw out the excess wax that has built up. If you want to try your own natural solution, there are also several ways you can do it. One of the most interesting and oldest methods is called “candling”. This consists of taking a special cone shaped contraptions (such as reeds, wax cones, candles, etc, and lighting a flame at the outer end, which causes a vacuum to form, it turn pulling out the earwax. Some people claim that this method not only cleans out the ears but also does something for a person’s inner self as well. This method is said to have been used by the ancient Egyptians, and is used by the Native Americans to this day. Some professionals claim that it doesn’t work and can be dangerous, but natural practitioners continue to use it, and swear by it. (If you are going to try this yourself, please do it under the supervision of an expert, and make sure that you do not have perforated ear drums or no ear tubes, because in those cases this method could be detrimental). So, in this case, when in doubt, don’t. Some people use a simple hot water bottle to heat the earwax and allow it to come out on its own. The hot water bottle method is a lot simpler and safer than candling.
Other people use a wash of hydrogen peroxide (which is a naturally occurring chemical). Apparently all you have to do it pour a small amount of it in your ear and wait. Shortly ear wax and other things will begin to come out. Another method is to use the hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ear bud. That method won’t get rid of serious wax buildup but it will make you feel better.
An even safer method is to put olive oil in your ear. Olive oil is like a natural antibiotic and it is oily as well. If you want an even stronger remedy, you can also try adding some squeezed garlic juice in with the olive oil before you put it in. After allowing it some time, the wax should begin to soften and will often come out on its own.
The fact is that some people just produce more earwax than others. Those people have the choice of doing nothing and leaving it, or, if it is bothering them, they can try one of the solutions mentioned above. You can always take preventative measures and use a softening agent (like olive oil) once in a while to make sure that it doesn’t become worse. If your problem is chronic though and bothers you, or if it is accompanied be severe deafness or pain, you should do something right away. Even if you decide to use a natural home style remedy it is better to consult the doctor before doing so, just to rule out any organic ailment like a perforated eardrum, etc. Don’t leave your ear health to chance because once you lose your hearing you may never get it back. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
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