Our ears usually clean themselves, but sometimes ear wax stays stuck inside the ear canal and begins to build up. If left to build up, ear wax can cause temporary hearing loss, vertigo-like symptoms and pain. It’s possible to remove even the most stubborn ear wax buildup at home.
Don’t Buy Expensive Drops
You can buy ear wax-dissolving drops at a pharmacy, but inexpensive, effective solutions can be made at home. You can either mix 4 oz. of warm water with 1 tbsp. of baking soda, or you can use peroxide. Both of these solutions will dissolve earwax the same way the packaged drops do.
To get your solution into the ear, you can use a dropper, a bulb syringe, or just use the peroxide cap and pour it into the ear. After you fill the ear with the solution, keep your head tilted to the side and let then solution penetrate the wax for 5 to 10 minutes. Then place a tissue over that ear and tilt your head to the opposite side to drain out any dissolved wax and solution. Repeat this daily until you feel the wax buildup is gone. As the wax is dissolving, your ear may feel worse before it feels better. If you experience any pain while doing this, stop and consult a physician. If you have a ruptured ear drum, you shouldn’t put any liquid into your ear.
Wax That Won’t Dissolve
Sometimes wax has been building up for so long in the ear that it hardens and attaches to the skin in the ear canal. Try oil to soften the wax before trying to wash it out or dissolve it. Whatever kind of oil you have for cooking is safe to put into the ear. Olive oil is best, but any cooking oil will work. Pour 1/4 capful or 10 drops of oil into the ear, tilt your head to the side, and let the oil penetrate the wax for 5 to 10 minutes. Then place a tissue over that ear and tilt your head to the opposite side and let the oil drain out. Repeat this daily for a week, and then start using one of the solutions for dissolving.
Flush out the Rest
Once you have been dissolving and/or oiling the ear wax for a week, you need to flush out that ear with water. This can be done either with a bulb syringe and a cup of warm water or in the shower. It’s the water pressure squirting into the ear that works to flush out the remaining wax. When you take a shower, turn your ear up toward the shower head and let the water squirt into the ear; then turn that ear down and shake it a little to get the water and wax out. Don’t hold a hand-held shower sprayer up to your ear; it creates too much pressure and could damage your eardrum. If you use a bulb syringe, fill a cup with warm water, stick the syringe in the cup and fill it, then lean your ear down over the sink or tub, stick the tip of the syringe to the edge of the ear canal and squirt the water in. This should be repeated several times. After a week of flushing, that stubborn wax will be gone.