Have you ever wondered how ear wax is formed? It’s a common misconception that ear wax is a sign of poor hygiene, but it’s actually a natural and important part of our ear health. In this video guide, we’ll explain the science behind ear wax and how it’s formed.
What is Ear Wax?
Ear wax, also known as cerumen, is a sticky substance that’s produced by the glands in our ear canal. Its main function is to protect our ears from dust, dirt, and other foreign particles.
How is Ear Wax Formed?
Ear wax is formed when the glands in our ear canal produce a combination of dead skin cells, hair, and secretions from the glands. These materials are then mixed together to form a sticky substance that’s known as ear wax.
Types of Ear Wax
There are two types of ear wax – wet and dry. Wet ear wax is more common in Asian and Native American populations, while dry ear wax is more common in Caucasians and African Americans.
Why is Ear Wax Important?
Ear wax is important because it helps to protect our ears from infection. It works by trapping foreign particles and preventing them from entering the inner ear. It also helps to lubricate the ear canal, which can prevent itching and dryness.
How to Clean Ear Wax
It’s important to note that ear wax should not be completely removed, as it’s a natural and important part of our ear health. However, if you have excessive ear wax buildup, you can clean it using a few simple methods.
Ear drops can be used to soften ear wax, making it easier to remove. Simply apply a few drops of ear drops into your ear canal and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, use a clean cloth or tissue to gently wipe away the ear wax.
Ear irrigation involves using a syringe or bulb to gently flush out the ear canal with warm water. This method should only be done by a healthcare professional, as it can be dangerous if not done properly.
Now that you know how ear wax is formed and why it’s important, you can take steps to maintain your ear health. Remember to never insert anything into your ear canal, as this can cause damage and increase the risk of infection. If you have excessive ear wax buildup or any other concerns, be sure to consult with a healthcare professional.