Q:

What are treatments for blocked ear wax?

A:

Quick Answer

Treatments for ear wax blockage include flushing with a bulb syringe filled with warm water or a water pick, states Mayo Clinic. A doctor can also use a curette, a slender, curved instrument. Prevention options include such medications as carbamide peroxide once every month or two.

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Full Answer

Some home treatments may ease ear wax blockage without requiring medication or a trip to the doctor's office, notes Mayo Clinic. Putting mineral oil, hydrogen peroxide, glycerin or baby oil into the affected ear canal twice a day for a maximum of five days can soften the wax and ease the blockage. After a day or two of softening, squirting warm water into the ear canal with a rubber bulb syringe can knock out some or most of the softened wax. After irrigating the ear, tipping the head to the side allows the water and any loosened wax to drain out.

While the home wax softening regimen often works, at other times it only affects the exterior layer of the wax, leading to lodging of wax further down into the ear canal or even against the eardrum itself, states Mayo Clinic. If symptoms do not resolve after several treatments, medical attention is necessary. Using such items as a bobby pin, Q-tip or paper clip should not be used to pull out wax, as they can damage the ear canal or push the wax further into the canal.

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