"Do you do ear syringing?"
We are often asked if we do “ear syringing” at Cardiff Hearing – the simple answer is no.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence states “Ear syringing, where a manual syringe pumps water into the ear, is potentially harmful and should not be used”.
As such, we don’t want to put our patients at risk; instead of ear syringing to remove your ear wax, at Cardiff Hearing we use the safest method of ear wax removal, and that is microsuction ear wax removal.
No matter if it’s one of our registered nurses or clinical audiologists performing ear wax removal, at Cardiff Hearing, we have all received the highest levels of clinical training and have experience of performing microsuction on thousands of ears annually.
What is microsuction ear wax removal we hear you cry?
Let’s take you through the process of what you can expect in our clinic at Cardiff Hearing when you come to us to remove your troublesome ear wax through microsuction, the gentlest form of ear wax removal.
Firstly, you will lay down in a semi-seated position on a clinical bed. This means there is no scope for your head to wobble and you are firmly and securely in place.
We will also be seated on something called a saddle stool.
We will then put on a microscope called an O-Scope with a very bright light; an O-Scope is a specialist microscope.
Some places use something called loupes but loupes do not offer optimum depth perception and it’s impossible to have true binocular vision with loupes; after all, you would want someone to be using both their eyes wouldn’t you when it comes to putting pointy things in your ears.
An O-Scope offers excellent perception of depth when it comes to working in your ear canals, and crystal-clear vision where we can use both our eyes at the same time to see exactly what we are doing when removing your stubborn ear wax.
ENT consultants often use O-Scopes to perform complex ear surgeries.
We will then hook up a sterile suction tube to our medical hoover, place something called a speculum (like a black plastic cone) in your ear so we can frame the canal and see everything that is going on clearly, and very gently, whilst always bracing against you for stability, we will place the suction tube in your ear and start sucking your ear wax out using air.
We don’t force anything down the canal. We want the ear wax to come away easily through suction, which is why it is really important the ear wax is soft prior to removal.
Microsuction should not hurt you. If there is any discomfort, it is likely that the wax is still a little hard or adherent to the ear canal and/or there may be a little inflammation or infection. If this is the case, it’s important you tell us so that you can go away, soften the wax further (or get treatment for your infection) and then return another day for us to remove the remaining ear wax in full when it is ready and safe to do so.
Microsuction ear wax removal can sound a little slurpy or a little squeaky; sometimes people find it tickly and often people say “oh this feels weird” but in a good way!
It is very unusual for us to not be able to remove all your ear wax when you visit us, but the crucial factor which really helps make successful ear wax removal possible through microsuction, is that you soften your ear wax prior to your appointment for a good few days beforehand.
The most gentle ear-wax softener is medical grade olive oil drops which you can buy from pharmacy, supermarkets, or even shops like Home Bargains opposite our clinic in Ely.
Let us Help
We look forward to seeing you for microsuction ear wax removal in our Covid19 secure purpose-built clinic in Ely, Cardiff.
Thank you for supporting our small independent hearing health practice.