What would an ENT say about this ear wax removal tool?

This Bluetooth-enabled gadget has a camera that you can monitor on your phone while you clean your ear and puncture your eardrum.

J&J says not to use Q-Tips to do this, presumably for liability reasons. Is this something that people really ought to be using for DIY ear canal cleaning?

PT Barnum is chuckling in his grave. There’s one born every minute.

As for me, I wouldn’t let that thing anywhere near my ears, or any other part of my anatomy.

My husband wanted to get new in-ear monitors, and the person who was going to do the molds recommended that he go to the doctor to get his ears cleaned.

The actual cleaning is done by medical assistants, but even they called in the doctor for some bits that were resisting the cleaning.

Many ENTs will tell you that there’s a lot they don’t know about how hearing works. And to treat your ears with care.

This tool is not a good idea.

Meh. I’ve been using a bobby pin to scoop out wax out of my ears for most of my 60+ years. It works great and have had no ill effects. I get my hearing tested at work every year.

And is your hearing still OK pkbites?


Sigh. Never mind I think I have my answer.

‘Never put anything smaller than your elbow into your ear’ is the advice I’ve heard from a number of medical professionals.

“But… I can’t put my elbow in my ear!”


Ha Ha.

It’s perfect. I get it tested at least once per year.

what’s next? Do your own colonoscopy? Cystoscopy?

Last time I asked an ENT about ear wax removal is not to mess with your the inside of your ears at all unless it causes pain, hearing loss, discharge, itching, etc. If there is a problem there are ways to treat it with water (see a doctor first) but don’t ever insert anything into the ear.

~Max, not a doctor

“This kit contains 12 feet of garden hose and a high-quality dental mirror as used by actual dentists….”

As an Asian man with dry, hard earwax I’ve considered products like this but always ultimately pass.

I go to the ENT about every 5 years to get huge amounts of cerumen scooped out of my head (they are always very impressed) and when they do it, it’s extremely unpleasant. It feels like they’re looking for the other side. Some are gentler than others, but it’s never an enjoyable experience either way.

My point being, if you need something stuck in there to clear things out, you need to go way deeper than you’re probably willing to (or should) go. If you don’t need to go that deep, you probably don’t really have a problem. (I am not a doctor, that’s just my intuitive feeling about it)

My doctor just told me to put olive oil in my ears and let it run out. It works.

My doctor used to use a “squirt machine” to wash out my ears, but they stopped, and I can’t find a single doctor who does that anymore. :rage:

When I was little, in the 80s, they had a cartoon PSA with a mouse doctor cleaning an elephant’s ears out. There was a pumpkin in his ear! The mouse doctor warned “Never, NEVER put anything in your EARS!”

I still trust that mouse doctor.

Well, let’s not be hasty…

Yeah but you’re only one guy. It’s like the one 100-year-old woman who claimed her secret to longevity was to have shot of corn whiskey every night.

It’s not like I’m digging in my ears every single day. Or trying to scoop out my brains. Just occasionally and deep enough to get some of the wax out.

Oh, and spider eggs. Gotta get them out too.

IANAD, but here is what I do. The first two steps were approved by my doctor; I never told him about the third, but I doubt he would have approved. YMMV

  1. For several nights in a row, drop a couple drops of something called Cerumol (roughly a Latin portmanteau for waxsoft) in the ear.

  2. When the wax seems soft, use a spraybulb while showering to ream out the now soft wax.

  3. Very, very carefully, ream out the ear with a Q-tip.

I really can’t recommend this, but it works for me. One year in Barbados, after I had been softening the wax for a week, I spent an hour doing the elementary backstroke in the salty ocean and when I came out of the water, brown gunk came dripping out of that ear.

As you probably know, Cecil has addressed this ethnic distinction

I started developing an earwax problem in my twenties. I had never use anything to clean out my ears before that.

I started getting earaches, and actually started losing my hearing in one ear. This eventually alarmed me enough to go to a clinic (I was away from home). They looked in my ear and recommended Debrox (probably similar to Cerumol). $80 for the doctor to tell me to use a $3 product from the pharmacy, but money well spent. The softening liquid came with a bulb syringe for rinsing.

At my next physical I told my regular doctor about this and that it seemed to have become a recurring problem. He suggested using the bulb syringe occasionally to rinse out my ear canal with warm water. That’s what I do now whenever I start to notice a problem. If I don’t catch it early enough I have to buy another bottle of Debrox, which usually works within a few treatments.

Writing this up is making my ears itch something awful.

I use this occasionally.