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a woman using a cotton swab to clean ear causing pain

What Is The Best Way To Clean Ears?

What is the best way to clean ears? Ear hygiene is an essential aspect of overall health, and keeping the ears clean is important to prevent infections and maintain good hearing. 

However, you must take extra precautions in cleaning the ears because it is a very delicate organ that can be easily damaged. 

In this blog post, we will explore the logic behind ear wax, the danger of putting sharp objects in the ears, and the best way to clean your ears.

The Logic Behind Ear Wax

Ear wax, scientifically referred to as cerumen, is a natural body substance that protects and lubricates the ears. It acts as a barrier to prevent dirt, dust, and other foreign objects from entering the ears.

There’s a common notion that earwax is dirty, and that the presence of earwax in the ears is a nuisance. The truth is, earwax plays an important role in balancing the environment of the ears. 

Each person produces various amounts of earwax. Various factors affect earwax production such as age, gender, and genes. The color and texture of earwax may also vary depending on the previously mentioned factors.

The Danger of Putting Sharp Objects in the Ears

Using cotton swabs to clean the ears is a common practice. However, this method of cleaning the ears can put your ear health in jeopardy because you might end up pushing the ear wax deeper inside, leading to infections, blockages, ringing in the ears, and even hearing loss.

Should You Clean Your Ears?

The need to clean the ears varies depending on how much earwax the ears are producing. Some individuals produce more wax than others, which could lead to excessive ear wax and a condition called cerumen impaction. 

A person with cerumen impaction may experience earache, dizziness, tinnitus, and hearing loss. If ever you experience any of these symptoms, make sure to see an audiologist to have your ears checked. An audiologist can also safely remove the blockage.

Best Way To Clean Ears: Do’s and Don’ts:

When it comes to your ear health, you must be very cautious to ensure that you don’t damage your hearing.

Below are some tips to help you maintain a clean and healthy ear:


  • Use doctor-prescribed ear drops. 
  • Use a washcloth and gently wipe your external ear.
  • See an audiologist for any discomfort, pain, or anything unusual that you feel inside your ears.


  • Don’t use cotton swabs or other sharp, pointed objects to clean the ears.
  • Don’t use ear candles. These are not approved by the FDA and may do more harm than good. 
  • Avoid over-cleaning your ears. Doing so may lead to irritation, dryness, and itching.
  • Don’t ignore symptoms to avoid getting complications. 

Bottomline: What is the best way to clean ears?

Cleaning the ears is an essential part of ear hygiene, but you must keep in mind to do it safely. If you are unsure of what’s the best way to clean ears, the safest thing you can do is to schedule an appointment with an audiologist. 

Audiologists at Abilene Audiology Co. are trained to diagnose and treat impacted earwax and other related ear problems.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment!

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