Discover the benefits of using an otoscope for maintaining ear health and preventing earwax blockage
Earwax is a substance called cerumen. It’s normal for your body to produce it, and it actually helps protect and lubricate your ears. If you didn’t have earwax, your ears would probably be itchy and dry. Earwax is like a filter for your ears, keeping out harmful things like dirt and dust, and trapping them so they don’t go deep inside. If it does build up inside your ear canal, especially if it clogs the canal, then you should know how to clean your ears to prevent your hearing from being impaired.
A digital otoscope with a camera gives you a good view of everything in the ear canal so that’s a great way to assess your ear hygiene. If you have a blockage it’s a good idea to use ear drops to soften the wax first, then you can use the earwax spoons to gently break up the blockage and scoop it out in pieces.
What is Earwax?
Earwax has antibacterial properties so it actually prevents dirt, dust and bacteria from entering your ears. Additionally, earwax naturally works its way out of your ear canals, where it dries and falls out. In theory, your ears are self cleaning and you shouldn’t have to clean out your earwax, but inevitably sometimes the earwax gets stuck in the ear canal or it clogs it up completely so it needs to be cleaned out.
Normal earwax is reddish brown and soft but if it’s been in your ear canal for a long time it can harden and turn dark. Black, or dark ear wax is not a cause for concern. It just means that your earwax isn’t emptying out as fast as it could be. This can cause some symptoms including hearing loss, but it’s not an emergency. However, you should seek professional help and make an appointment with your doctor if you see bloody earwax, feel dizzy or experience hearing loss. These are signs of a perforated or torn eardrum that needs to be treated to prevent an infection.
How an Otoscope Can Help
A digital otoscope with a camera gives you a good view of everything in the ear canal so that’s a great way to assess proper ear hygiene. If you have a blockage it’s a good idea to use ear drops to soften the wax first, then you can use earwax spoons to gently break up the blockage and scoop it out in pieces. Ears are self-cleaning, and earwax is natural and healthy to have in your ear canal, but if it builds up too much then it’s a good idea to know how to self clean ear wax. You can use an earwax softener to soften it and help it work its way out on its own. The best way to self clean your earwax is to use a digital otoscope to safely scrape out some of the excess earwax.
If you have too much earwax in your ear canal here are some ear hygiene tips on how to clean it out.
If you decide to clean out your ears at home, it is safe to use warm water to irrigate the ear, doing this at room temperature is best. Flush the ear gently, as a forceful flow of water can damage the ear. Don’t stick any objects like a Q-Tip into the ear, this can cause the wax to be pushed further into the ear. You can use ear drops to soften the wax if it has become dark and hardened. If you already have fluid in your ears, that is a different issue. Please see our post on "How to drain fluid from middle ear" for more information.
Ear drops can be purchased over-the-counter, like the brand Debrox, or you can use some home remedies like baby oil, mineral oil or glycerin. Using an eyedropper, apply a few drops (5-10) of warm oil or glycerin in the ear canal. This should soften the ear wax and help it work its way out naturally or make it easier to flush out.
A modern approach to earwax removal is to use a digital otoscope with a wax removal attachment. ScopeAround makes a number of devices that are safe to use because you can see inside your ear the entire time you are using the device. You can’t see what you are doing if you poke your ear with a Q-Tip. Digital otoscopes have integrated LED lights to illuminate the ear canal and help the tip of the otoscope avoid your eardrum. Ear wax removal is easy to do because a soft silicone-tipped spoon attaches to the end of the otoscope and that combined with the camera gives you the perfect tool to scrape out pieces of earwax.
Purchase a ScopeAround Otoscope for Better Ear Hygiene
Earwax congestion isn’t that common of an occurrence, but if it does happen, usually it can be taken care of at home without visiting a doctor. The first step is to look inside your ear canal with a digital otoscope. ScopeAround was the first company to make an ear inspection camera for consumer use and they have the most experience and customer feedback manufacturing these devices. ScopeAround makes digital otoscopes that are stand-alone devices as well as ones that are compatible with iPhone (iOS) and Android mobile devices as well as PC (Windows) or Mac (OSX) computers.
Explore ScopeAround Products:
- 5-In-1 Multipurpose Wireless Otoscope & Ear Cleaning Camera
- Digital Otoscope With Screen And Ear Wax Removal Tools
- MS500 Digital Otoscope With Screen
- Wireless Otoscope Camera With Ear Wax Removal
- USB Otoscope With Ear Wax Removal
- Ear Tips For Otoscope - Pack Of 4
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