Safe and Sound
Ear wax removal clinic
The North Hampshire ENT Partnership is a team of consultants and support staff specialising in the treatment of conditions affecting the Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT).
For safe, efficient and gentle removal of troublesome ear wax, we run private sessions at our immaculately equipped Safe and Sound clinic in Basingstoke.
What is ear wax?
Ear wax is a protective secretion made by the skin of the outer part of the ear canal.
It is normal for it to vary in colour from dark black to yellowish brown and to be of variable consistency, from dry and hard, to soft and runny. It does an important job of protecting the delicate skin of the ear canal and has some anti fungal properties. The amount of wax we make varies greatly from person to person, with no apparent reason.
Problem ear wax
Ear Wax causes trouble when it is produced in excess and blocks the ear.
Wax is normally carried to the outside of the ear by slow movement of the surface layer of the skin. This can be disturbed by pushing cotton buds into the ear which reverses the movement. It can even push wax from the outer part of the ear canal, which is where it should be, to the deep part or the ear canal, adjacent to the ear drum, where it can block the ear.
Some people can have smaller ear canals, impairing the normal cleaning process and some canals have a sharper bend that makes it harder for wax to leave.
The wax producing skin, like skin elsewhere, is prone to skin conditions such as eczema which can cause itching and flaking leading to excessive wax production.
If left untreated the build up of wax can completely close off the ear canal leading to impaired hearing. It can also stop the ear drying out and the retained water can predispose to infection in the ear canal.
(but not cotton buds!!) for good ear care.
• No cotton buds in the ears
• 2 drops of olive oil in the ear can keep ear wax softer and encourage self cleaning. Dropper bottles can be purchased from the chemists.
• When wax builds up it can sometimes be dissolved by using sodium bicarbonate drops. This may take some time to clear the ear but can be used now and then to prevent excessive accumulation of wax.
How we can help
Led by consultant surgeons Mr Jonathan Blanshard (left) and Mr Paul Spraggs, the North Hampshire ENT Partnership's Safe and Sound team under Aural Care Nurse Practitioner, Beverley Harrison, are trained in the efficient removal of wax in a safe and gentle way, ensuring a comfortable experience and a successful outcome.
Typical procedure: We use a microscope to first examine the ear and then, under direct vision, carefully remove the wax by microsuction, a safer, more effective way than syringing as it is done without using water which can predispose to infection.
In some cases wax can be too solid to remove by microsuction in which case we use small, precision instruments to delicately draw out the wax.
BMI The Hampshire Clinic, Old Basing (MAP)
North Hampshire ENT's Safe and Sound ear wax removal clinic at BMI The Hampshire Clinic in Old Basing is equipped with the very best microsuction equipment, microscopes, and specialised sterile instruments.