Information About Earwax
The main job of ear wax is to help prevent bacteria, germs, dirt and other irritants from entering your inner-ear. This can help prevent infections and possible blockages from forming. But, did you know that your earwax could give you indications of issues regarding your ear's health?
Your Earwax is Flaky
As we age, our earwax naturally tends to become more dry and flaky than it used to be. The glands in our ears tends to produce less moisture over time.
If you're younger and have this issue, it could be a sign that your ears are affected by a skin disorder. In a lot of cases, those who suffer from eczema and psoriasis report having flaky earwax.
Your Ears Itch & You Can "Feel" Your Earwax
Do you find yourself itching inside of your ear and do you feel like you can notice your earwax even when you're not touching your ears? This could mean that you have a blockage. Blockages are dangerous because they can temporarily lead to hearing loss and may even permanently damage your ear drum.
Your Earwax Has a Strong Odor
Earwax can have a subtle odor, but if the smell is strong and noticeable, it could be the indication of issues in your inner-ear. One cause is a cholesteatoma, which is a mass in the middle of the ear. This growth could make you more vulnerable to ear infections.
If this symptom is noticed with bloody discharge or pain, it could be an indication of cancer in the outer or middle ear. Because of the seriousness of these issues, it is important to let your ENT doctor know if you have exhibited these symptoms.
You Have Green or Yellow Earwax
The color of normal, healthy earwax can range from light orange to dark brown. But, if you notice that it is yellow or green, you may have an infection. Often times the infection will cause the earwax to become watery. However, watery green earwax can also appear when you sweat and perspiration leaks down into your ears.
Do Not Clean Your Ears Yourself
Your ears are made to clean themselves. Be sure to that you don't try to clean your ears with q-tips or fingers as you may push earwax further into your ear canal. Many people wrongly assume that "ear candling," (using a cone shaped candle to soften and remove earwax) is a safe option for cleaning your ears. This method can cause burns, wax blockages and even a punctured ear drum.
Contact Gulfcoast Ear, Nose & Throat at (727) 942-4005 for information on ear wax treatment.