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Earwax build-up

Sometimes earwax can build up in your ears and block them. This can be uncomfortable and annoying, but can usually be treated.

Symptoms of an earwax build-up include earache, difficulty hearing and itchiness in your ear.

You can try to remove earwax using drops of olive or almond oil. If that does not work, you can get chemical drops from a pharmacy.

Read more on the NHS website.

Symptoms of an earwax build-up include earache, difficulty hearing and itchiness in your ear.

How to tell if your ear is blocked with earwax

You can have:

Once the earwax is removed, these symptoms usually improve. If they do not, see the nurse at your GP practice.

Read more on the NHS website.

You can try to remove earwax using drops of olive or almond oil. If that does not work, you can get chemical drops from a pharmacy.

Self-care

Important

Do not use your fingers or any objects like cotton buds to remove earwax. This will push it in and make it worse.

Earwax usually falls out on its own. If it does not and blocks your ear, put 2 to 3 drops of olive or almond oil in your ear twice a day for a few days.

Over 2 weeks lumps of earwax should fall out of your ear, especially at night when you're lying down.

There's no evidence that ear candles or ear vacuums get rid of earwax.

Medical treatments

Speak to a pharmacist about earwax build-up. They can give advice and suggest treatments.

They might recommend chemical drops to dissolve the earwax. The earwax should fall out on its own or dissolve after about a week.

Do not use drops if you have a hole in your eardrum (a perforated eardrum).

Read more on the NHS website.