DO WE NEED TO WASH OUR EARS?
In a few words
Just like our nose, our mouth and our skin, our ears need regular cleansing. Essential for our hearing and balance, ears are sensitive organs, which need appropriate care. Let's keep our ears open!
Why is it important to wash our ears?
Ears produce a fatty, yellowy or brownish substance: cerumen, more commonly known as earwax. Secreted by the cerumen glands located in the wall of the external ear canal, cerumen protects the canal and the eardrum against bacteria. So, if it's useful for our health, why do we need to clean our ears?
Despite its protective role on the one hand, cerumen is also the cause of a number of problems. In fact, the ear's capacity to naturally expel cerumen from the ear can be affected by a number of factors. If it builds up in the ear canal, a cerumen plug can form and lead to a number of complications.
Washing your ears is the way to prevent against various ear problems.
Regular ear cleansing ensures that cerumen is removed properly from the ear canal. This is a way of controlling the build-up and preventing the formation of a cerumen plug. So, getting into the habit of cleansing our ears with an appropriate solution:
- Protects our hearing;
- Prevents pain, tinnitus and dizziness*;
- Prevents water retention in the ear canal;
- Enables our doctor to see the eardrum properly during an examination;
- Ensures that any hearing aids we may have are working properly*.
What's the correct way for washing my ears?
What method should I choose for washing my ears?
It is preferable not to use objects such as ear scoops or cotton buds. Why? Because they can prove dangerous: indeed, the eardrum is very close to the entrance to the ear canal, so it is easily reached. This membrane is extremely sensitive: there is a real risk of injury*.
To clean your ears effectively and gently, aqueous solutions are recommended: the water will bring the cerumen towards the entrance to the ear canal, thus helping it to drain out of the ear.
How often do I need to wash my ears?
Except in specific situations, it is recommended to clean your ears about twice a week.
What aqueous solution should I choose for washing my ears?
Sea water has a number of benefits for the body ! Did you know it has cerumenolytic properties? Sea salt dissolves the cerumen particles, which helps drain it from the ear.
Babies, children, adults... What is the right amount of solution to use? Choose a product that provides a dosing system suitable for the user.
Although ear sprays are not recommended for infants, due to the sensitivity of their ears, they are however a useful solution from 3 years up. Preferably use a gentle, broad spray. To avoid any feeling of pressure, choose an appropriate nozzle, which allows the air to circulate.
*Scientific source: Doctor Pierre Drweski, ENT specialist.