Our ears are self-cleaning; therefore you do not need to take any further steps to clean them. Wax is basically a combination of fat and oils that are secreted by the skin along the ear canal. The purpose of the wax is to trap dirt and particles and keep them from reaching the eardrum. Earwax tends to fall out all by itself, without us even noticing what is happening.
Outer Ear Cleaning
During or after your shower, manipulate a washcloth into a size to fit the curves of your outer ear. Be careful not to force water from the washcloth into the ear canal. Go in and around a few times, but do not get too rough as ears can be very sensitive and need a natural layer of oils to protect the ear. If you insist on a cotton swab, keep it completely out of the inner ear canal.
Getting Water out of Ears
Oftentimes, people will jump around and even hit their hand against their head to get the water out of their ears. It can be mind-numbingly frustrating when you’ve gone swimming and can’t get water out of your ears. Bacteria can infect the ear this way, causing the infamously painful condition called “swimmer’s ear”. Trapped water in any ear can cause an infection as the water gives a medium for bacteria, fungus or parasites already present to grow and multiply.
1. Always wear a helmet when you bike, ski, and roller blade or in any other activity that puts you at risk for head and ear injuries.
2. If you scuba dive, learn and practice proper underwater techniques to avoid potentially damaging changes in pressure inside your ears.
3. When flying in an airplane, swallow and yawn frequently when the plane is ascending and descending to equalize pressure in your ears. If you have an upper respiratory problem such as a cold or sinus infection, take a decongestant a few hours before descending, or use a decongestant spray just prior to descent and on landing.
4. Earplugs with special filters can be purchased to help equalize air pressure in ears during air travel.