Ear Irrigation: A Safe and Effective Way to Remove Excess Ear Wax
Jul 24, 2023 in Hearing Care
What is Ear Irrigation?
The most common method for ear wax removal used to be ear syringing, but technology has moved on. Ear irrigation is the modern way to clear ear wax. And providing it is performed by a trained professional, it is completely safe, quick and usually pain free.
The ear wax removal irrigation method uses a stream of body-temperature water, which is flushed into the ear canal to remove any build up of wax or other debris. It’s perfect for removing large quantities of ear wax that have built up over time.
Is ear irrigation safe?
When conducted by a trained professional, ear irrigation is a safe, routine process. There may be an unusual sensation during the procedure, but this will ease once the irrigation is complete.
At Leightons, our clinical experts will decide whether ear wax irrigation is suitable for you based on a thorough examination of your ear(s), as well as your medical history. Irrigation will not be conducted if you have a history of operations on the ear, perforations of the eardrum or recurrent infections.
Also if you have a recent history of vertigo, ear irrigation may not be appropriate for you. This is because there is a slight risk of dizziness, due to temporary changes of temperature in one ear at a time.
Of course, your clinician will talk you through everything at your appointment and advise alternative methods that are better suited for you if ear irrigation is not appropriate.
Ear syringing at home
While it might seem tempting, at home methods for ear wax removal are not recommended. When not performed by a trained professional, ear syringing at home can cause ear wax to be pushed further into the ear, damage to the delicate ear canal, and even hearing loss.
We do not advise:
- Inserting cotton buds, hairpins, paperclips, or other implements into the ear
- At home ear bulb syringe or ear wax syringe methods
- Dripping oils, waxes or hydrogen peroxide into the ear
- Hopi ear candles
Professional ear irrigation
When you come to Leightons for ear wax removal, your consultation will include:
A full hearing assessment A detailed review of your ear health history The opportunity to ask any questions
We use only the safest and most up-to-date techniques to examine your ears, including video otoscopy. And once the assessment is complete, we will advise on the best method of ear wax removal for your ear health – as well as tips for aftercare.
Our comprehensive ear wax removal consultation costs £70 and an appointment normally takes around 30 minutes.
How do I know my ears need irrigation?
Ear wax is a naturally occurring substance, which actually protects your inner ear canal from external harm. Usually, our ears are very good at cleaning themselves, and ear wax removal isn’t needed.
However, if you have any of the following symptoms, ear wax irrigation could be necessary:
- Ears feeling full or itchy inside
- Muffled hearing
- Tinnitus – inexplicable ringing or other sounds from inside the ear
- Earache or inner ear pain
Ear irrigation near me
If you are concerned a build-up of ear wax might be affecting your hearing or causing ear pain, our trained professionals are here to help.
You can book an appointment online, by calling us on 0800 40 20 20, or by visiting your local branch.