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Here's why you should never use cotton buds to clean your ears

Here's why you should never use cotton buds to clean your ears

Doctors have reaffirmed one fact about earwax removal: we should stop using cotton swabs.

The guideline includes a number of dos and don'ts about caring for your ears and most prominent amongst column B is a warning about sticking a pointy object directly into your ear canal.

As a rule of thumb, the organization advises against putting anything smaller than your elbow in your ear.

And if you're seriously concerned about your ear wax, see a doctor or other medical professional. Dirt or anything else that enters in our ear should get stuck in the wax.

Chewing, moving your jaw and growing new skin cells in the ear canal all help to do this.

Dr. Seth Schwartz, chair of guideline update group during an interview with CBS News said, "The updated guidelines are much more patient friendly".

Earwax, also known as cerumen is made by our own body to grease up the inside of the ears and to trap any invading particle. Around 10 percent of children and five percent of adults suffer from this problem, with numbers higher in older or developmentally-delayed folks. However, if the process is disturbed, earwax might build up in your ears bringing health consequences such as deafness. In fact, the reason you should never clean your ears with cotton buds is pretty serious. "Cotton swabs, hair pins, care keys, toothpicks... these can all injure your ear and may cause a laceration (cut) in the ear canal, a perforation (hole) in the eardrum, and/or dislocation of the hearing bones, leading to hearing loss, dizziness, ringing, and other symptoms of ear injury". Schwartz said an update was overdue by now, though he admitted that nothing changed dramatically in the update.




However, the expert advice to not use it as they warn people that it could be harmful to human beings and it's not a safe way to clean the ear and it could be very bad for the all of us.

DO ask your provider about ways that you can treat your cerumen impaction at home. This condition is most common among elderly, according to Dr. James Battey, director of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

"The problem is that this effort to eliminate earwax is only creating further issues because the earwax is just getting pushed down and impacted farther into the ear canal", he explained. Image credit: David Wolfe. Let's start with earwax. When that fails, irrigation can help flush out the ears.

Certain hearing aids, or wearing earbuds instead of over-the-ear headphones, can also inadvertently push wax deeper into the ear, Taylor said.

DON'T overclean your ears.

In most cases, though, wax that's naturally found near the outer part of the ear can be wiped away with a damp cloth, Taylor added.

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