Home > Eye & Ear Hygiene > Correct Ear Cleaning

Correct Ear Cleaning

By: Anna Martin - Updated: 15 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
Ears Cleaning Ear Wax Tea Tree Oil

Maintaining good standards of personal hygiene extends beyond bodycare and dental hygiene. Ensuring your ears are always clean means you limit the risks of harbouring potential infections. Knowing the correct way to maintain clean ears will also reduce the risk of personal injury through following an incorrect cleaning procedure.

Removing Ear Wax

Ear wax is a natural protection against debris entering the ear canal. Excessive ear wax however not only poses hygiene problems but also impacts on the quality of your hearing. Removing excessive ear wax can be done easily by inserting a few drops of ear wax removal solution into each ear. Add the drops to one ear and allow the solution to flow into the ear canal for a few minutes. Then gently rinse out the ear with warm water and ensure you dry thoroughly. Repeat the process with the other ear.

Cleaning The Ear Canal

A warm, wet flannel or wash cloth provides the safest and easiest method of cleaning the inside of the ear. Cotton swabs, or Q-tips, may appear to be a quick alternative but they increase the risk of damage to the eardrum through poking and prodding, Instead it is best to wrap the damp flannel around your little finger and to insert this into the ear canal as far as you can. Gently wipe inside the ear canal and along all the folds.

Dry the area with a soft, clean towel and repeat the process with a little tea tree oil or rubbing alcohol dripped onto a ball of cotton wool.

Washing Behind The Ears

Waxy deposits settle behind the ears as well as inside the ear canal so it is important to clean the ears thoroughly, inside and out. Use warm soapy water and a flannel or wash cloth to gently scrub the area of skin behind the ears. You can do this whilst in the shower for ease, or over the sink. Once clean ensure you dry the skin thoroughly with a clean soft towel. Wiping over the skin gently with a drop of tea tree oil, on a cotton wall ball, also ensures all soap traces have been removed.

Cleaning Children’s Ears

To loosen up a build-up of ear wax add a few drops of olive oil to the child’s ear. Allowing this to sit for a few minutes will help loosen any hardened wax. Begin to massage the outer ear. This movement will encourage the oil and wax to drip out of the ear canal, which you can then clean up with a tissue or wash cloth.

Repeat the process of washing the ears, inside and behind, with a warm, wet flannel or wash cloth.

Cleaning Pierced Ears

Newly pierced ears require additional care and attention to keep them infection free. Cleanliness is essential and the easiest way to do this is to soak a ball of cotton wool in a cleaning solution like hydrogen peroxide. Make sure you clean both sides of the ear, in the morning and in the evening, to ensure there is no infection. If the skin begins to look red or develops an itch it will be necessary to apply an antibiotic cream to reduce inflammation and infection.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • shell
    Re: Combating Itchy Ears
    I have excema in my ears and i use cetirizine hydrochloride allergy tablets 1 a day, i rub pure extra virgin organic coconut oil all around…
    11 October 2019
  • Nikki
    Re: What is Personal Hygiene?
    This essay helped me a lot in my English Writing. I have upgraded a lot in my writing since then. Thanks a lot !
    11 September 2019
  • SnowyOwl2000
    Re: Washing and Bathing
    I am looking for anything that will tell me if leaving soaking wet flannels in the bathroom will encourage bacteria more quickly than if they…
    23 August 2019
  • Suzy
    Re: Post-operative Hygiene and Wound Care
    I had bunion surgery and hammer toe surgery at the same time' its 12days now and i go for stiches out after 15days'…
    28 June 2019
  • Zoey
    Re: Combating Itchy Ears
    I am pretty sure i have psoriasis but never diagnosed. I must say dry itchy ears is only part of the battle but it does get so bad that…
    16 June 2019
  • amensco
    Re: The Importance of Good Personal Hygiene
    l need details information on personal hygiene
    18 May 2019
  • Fortunate MAYOR
    Re: What is Personal Hygiene?
    Thanks so much, this really help me in my write up
    9 May 2019
  • Dick
    Re: Combating Itchy Ears
    Only one ear gives me trouble with itching ear channel and scratching is required,So with a finger, never with Q tips etc. To stop the itch,…
    5 May 2019
  • Chrissy
    Re: Combating Itchy Ears
    I have had this annoying itch in my ears for over a year now and I get panicky if I dont have a Q-tip, they itch in the night, theres no wax…
    8 December 2018
  • Munna
    Re: Washing and Bathing
    Want to know more about the health and heigen.
    19 October 2018