Suffering from a lot of earwax, what can you do about it?

If you have a lot of earwax in your ear, you can experience this. It can cause you to hear less well, your ear can become clogged, it can ‘feel wet’ in your ear and it can be irritating when you walk outside and the wind blows. Earwax can also be a cause of earache, tinnitus and other complaints. What can you do if you suffer from excessive earwax?


  • What is earwax for?
  • When do you suffer from excessive earwax?
  • What causes damage that leads to problems?
  • When should you consult a doctor?
  • Syringing your ears at the doctor’s office: the last solution
  • Clean your ears yourself responsibly


What is earwax for?

Ear wax , ear wax or cerumen are different names for the greasy yellow or white stuff that sits in your ear canal and can be felt when you put your finger in your ear. It is secreted by the glands in your ear canal and is white at first but changes color as it dries. Earwax is usually yellow , but it can also turn brown, red, orange or even almost black. Black earwax is no reason to worry. The black color does not come from the inside but is caused by a lot of dust coming from outside that mixes with the yellow substance.
Ear wax has an important function, because it ensures that the ear canal is cleaned. It protects the deeper parts of your ear against dirt and bacteria. The earwax prevents your eardrum from drying out, so it is important for the quality of your hearing. How much earwax is produced varies per person and it may even happen that a lot of earwax comes from your left ear and only a little from your right ear or the other way around.

When do you suffer from excessive earwax?

As mentioned, one person can have a lot of earwax production while another hardly notices it. So it cannot be said that a certain amount is too much. However, you notice that you suffer from excessive earwax production when you start to experience poor hearing. You often notice this immediately after showering or swimming. When a plug of earwax comes into contact with water or other liquid, it swells and blocks hearing. You may also walk around with the feeling that something is stuck in your ear or you may have mild to severe ear pain. These are all symptoms of excessive earwax production leading to clogged ears. Other symptoms include ringing in the ears, dizziness or the feeling of itching in your ear.
You usually suffer from too much earwax due to damage in your ear, no matter how small. Such damage has two consequences:

  • The glands that produce earwax are stimulated to produce more earwax than normal.
  • The hairs that normally push the earwax out stop working, causing further accumulation.

So more cerumen is produced and less is removed and you can feel that well.

What causes damage that leads to problems?

Many complaints can be prevented yourself. People often cause damage themselves by trying to clean their ears too much. People try to scratch their ears with objects that are not intended for that purpose or overuse cotton swabs . Other common causes are the use of earplugs, eczema or frequent swimming. People with hearing aids are also at increased risk of irritating the entrance to the ear. People who have a lot of hair growth near their ears may experience ear problems because the drainage of ear wax is hindered. It also happens quite often that construction workers, movers or other people who often work in a dusty environment develop these complaints because the hairs in their ears cannot keep out the dirt. Something that can affect the functioning of the ear hairs is soap in the ear. So make sure you avoid this contact.

When should you consult a doctor?

An excess of earwax is in principle harmless, but it can cause unpleasant complaints, of which pain and hearing loss are the most annoying. The GP can offer a solution by removing the earwax. The doctor will often not immediately proceed with syringing the ears, but will first advise you to try to soften the earwax yourself by applying some oil. It is important that the oil is not cold because then you can suffer from your balance. Using oil cannot be a bad idea for someone who regularly suffers from a lot of earwax. This can easily be done with sunflower oil. To be sure, ask a doctor for advice.
A plug of earwax can also pop out on its own. Here too, it is important to ensure that the water is not too cold but has a temperature of approximately 38 degrees. Because there is always a risk of a hole in the eardrum, it is advisable to have this checked by your doctor first. You can also buy earwax remover at the drugstore . The name is misleading because it does not actually dissolve the earwax, but only becomes thinner, making it easier to come out. However, the preservatives that are often used can also make the problem worse. So it is often not the best solution.

Syringing your ears at the doctor’s office: the last solution

Syringing the ears is annoying and children are especially afraid of it. However, once the doctor has determined that a plug of earwax is the culprit, he may decide that this is the best remedy. Water is then injected into the ear using a device. The pressure behind the plug causes it to be ejected outwards, which solves the problem in one fell swoop.
Does ear rinsing hurt? This is the question of everyone who has to undergo the treatment for the first time. There is no clear answer to this. Many people find the feeling of water in their ears so annoying that they absolutely do not dare to do it. However, keep in mind that it can solve the discomfort of clogged ears in one go.

Clean your ears yourself responsibly

There are also various products available that can help you get rid of that annoying earwax. For example, you could use Audispray. This is a spray with filtered and microbiologically tested seawater that allows you to rinse your ears yourself without the risk of damage. This is not as powerful as having it done at the doctor’s office, but it generally does not feel unpleasant. Other ear sprays are available from the brands Earex, Lucovit and Othalgan, among others.

Otalgan Click & Clean Ear Wax Sticks

Many people find it annoying to have to inject something into their ear. However, using cotton swabs can be counterproductive because you only push a plug of earwax further into your ear, preventing it from coming out on its own. This increases the chance that you will eventually have to go to the doctor to have your ears syringed out. A good solution is to use Otalgan Click & Clean Earwax Sticks . These are cotton swabs and liquid in one to remove earwax easily. You use the rods by ‘activating’ the rod on one side by pressing it, causing the liquid (consisting of distilled water and sea salt) to reach the piece of cotton wool on the other side. This allows you to clean your ear in a responsible way. The liquid softens the earwax and prevents accumulations of earwax in your ear. It is recommended to use the sticks every other day.

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