Wax build up and wax impaction //
The most common simple problem with the ears is the build up of wax, or 'cerumen' as it is medically known. Everyone produces a different amount of wax and in most people the skin cells in the ear canal migrate outwards, bringing with them the wax towards the outer ear. However some people find that the wax can build up in the canal and cause a blockage, impacting on hearing. This is more common in people with a history of ear surgery or with hearing aid use.
Some Clinics offer microsuction using magnified glasses, but at the Primary Care Ear Clinic, we use an advanced microscope and microsuction technique to clear the ear canals under direct vision. Many GP surgeries will use syringing to clear the ears, however this is not advised for those with a history of certain ear operations or perforation of the ear drum. The microsuction technique is lower risk than syringing as it does not involve water and is safe for all. It is often also well tolerated in children.
'Australian Hearing' recommends that people who use hearing aids frequently have wax cleared regularly to avoid blocking the hearing aid. It is generally recognised that microsuction is safer and more effective than syringing and whilst it may be easier if wax softening drops have been used prior, it is not essential.