Hydrogen Peroxide in Ear Wax Removal is Safe or Bad? – Ear Cleaning

Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most common methods for cleaning out your ears. Hydrogen peroxide in ear helps to soften and loosen the ear wax. So that it is easy to remove the soft wax from your ear. Cleaning ears with hydrogen peroxide is one of the safest ways to get rid of dust and ear waxes.

Your ear is designed to be self-cleaning. So that it can drain away the wax, debris or other dust without manual cleaning process. Applying hydrogen peroxide in ear speeds up the self-cleaning process.

It is always better to use a washcloth to clean your outer ear canal. At unavoidable times, you can use hydrogen peroxide to remove ear wax. But care should be taken while using hydrogen peroxide to clean ears since you have to use diluted one and not the Concentrated one. If you feel this method is unsafe, then try the best ear wax removal kit to remove the excess wax without any side effects.

What is Ear Wax?

Ear wax is an oily substance produced by the wax glands in the external ear canal. This ear wax is important since it protects your ear from the foreign objects (water, dust, debris, infection, insects, etc) and reduces the risk of infection in the ear.

  • The amount of wax in the ear canal depends on the individual.
  • There are 2 types of ear wax. They are wet and dry waxes. Wet wax is common among the people in western countries and the dry wax is common in Asia.
  • Wet wax contains 50% of lipids (fat content) and dry wax contains 20% of lipids.
  • Earwax is always beneficial for your ears by preventing the external objects by entering into it.
  • Very little ear wax causes ear infection and too much wax causes hearing loss and infection problems.
  • At least 10 antimicrobial peptides are present in ear wax to prevent the bacteria and fungi from growing.

Why Should Ear Wax be Removed Manually?

As I mentioned earlier, the amount of wax depends on the individual. So if you have too much of wax, then it may

  • Plug up the ear and makes the feeling of fullness in the ear, which in turn leads to temporary hearing loss.
  • Trap the bacteria and leads to infection or an earache.
  • A sensation your ears are plugged.
  • Noticeable wax accumulation causes a severe earache.
  • Severe itching in your ears.
  • Cause foul odor in your ears
  • Causes noises in the inner ear.hydrogen peroxide in ear wax removal

At this situation, the ear wax can be manually removed with the help of some medications. In this article, I focussed mainly on how to use hydrogen peroxide to remove the ear wax.

How Hydrogen Peroxide Cleans the Ear Wax?

Removing excess ear wax with Hydrogen Peroxide is easy. Once getting contact with the ear wax,  hydrogen peroxide reacts with it and releases oxygen. This oxygen release leads to foaming(bubbles) which in turn removes dead skin while cleaning the area. This bubbling up of wax results in softening and loosen the ear wax. So that it can drain out from the ear easily. 

How to Use Hydrogen Peroxide to Remove Ear Wax?

Cleaning ears with hydrogen peroxide is one of the traditional ways to remove ear wax. You can remove excess ear wax at home, but before you consider removing your ear wax with hydrogen peroxide, you have to ensure that you don’t have any ear infection at that time. Avoid pushing earwax deeper into the ear canal as this can cause further impaction.

Here I listed the detailed procedure to remove your ear wax with hydrogen peroxide. You can buy peroxide ear drops at your nearby pharmacy.

  • Lie down on your side and make sure that your ear should face up.
  • Now pour few drops of hydrogen peroxide (as per the directions on the bottle) into your ear.
  • Wait for 5-10 minutes and let the hydrogen peroxide to do its cleaning process.
  • Within few seconds, you can experience the bubbling and popping sound in your ear. This indicates that hydrogen peroxide is doing chemical action with the ear wax and other dust to remove them.
  • Once the fizzing sounds have stopped, you can tilt your head downwards and drain out the hydrogen peroxide (along with earwax and dust) with the tissue paper or any cloth.
  • Now repeat the above process for another ear.

If you feel this method is unsafe, then try the best ear wax removal kit to remove the excess wax without any side effects.

hydrogen peroxide in ear wax removal

Image Credits: Northwestern University

Caution While Using Hydrogen Peroxide in Ear

  • Be sure to follow the directions on the hydrogen peroxide eardrop package.
  • Make sure that you are using diluted hydrogen peroxide.
  • Don’t use the hydrogen peroxide ear drops if you have an ear injury (punctured eardrum, etc).
  • Do not use any foreign object (cotton swabs, Q-tips, hairpins, clips, car keys, etc) into your ear to help remove the wax.
  • Don’t use peroxide in your ears for more than once per day. It may irritate your ears and causes infection.
  • Don’t use peroxide if you have an ear infection.
  • No need to pour hydrogen peroxide drops daily.
  • If you can’t clean your ears in three days, consult your doctor.
  • Make sure to dry the outer ear thoroughly after irrigating with water, since bacteria can breed in it.
  • Keep your hairs away from hydrogen peroxide. Since the chemicals in it will lighten your hairs.

Homemade Hydrogen Peroxide Eardrops

You can buy peroxide ear drops at your nearby pharmacy. You can also make your own ear drop solution at home. If you like to make a homemade hydrogen peroxide drops to clean your ears, make sure to use diluted hydrogen peroxide.

Don’t use the concentrated one, since it will do major harm to your ear. Use water to dilute the hydrogen peroxide around 3%.

  • Take the diluted hydrogen peroxide and pour 2-3 drops of it into your ear.
  • Wait for 5 minutes.
  • Once the fizzing and popping sounds have stopped, tilt your ear and dry it with a towel or a tissue paper.

Ear Irrigation

Another way to remove earwax buildup is by irrigating the ear. If hydrogen peroxide is not available, then try this ear irrigation method to remove the wax and other foreign objects from your ear. But irrigation of a ruptured eardrum could cause hearing loss or infection.

  • Take equal parts of white vinegar, warm water, and rubbing alcohol.
  • Mix them well.
  • Pour 3-4 drops into each ear.
  • Leave it on for 5 minutes.
  • This will soften and loosen the wax.
  • Turn your head to allow the liquid to drain away.

You can also use baby oil or olive oil to irrigate your ears once in a month to ease the ear’s self-cleaning process.

FAQS

How Often Should You Clean Your Ears?

This depends on the individual. First of all, you have to know that you are a wax producer or not.

If you produce a lot of earwax, then you have to clean your ears once in a month. If you have normal amounts of wax, then no need of any cleaning process. Your ears will clean themselves.

You can identify by yourself on which category you fall in with the above-mentioned ear wax problems or consulting your doctor.

Use hydrogen peroxide, ear irrigation or mineral oil to get rid of excessive ear wax from your ear.

Can you put hydrogen peroxide in your ear?

Yes, you can pour hydrogen peroxide in your ears. But you have to follow the instructions on the peroxide package.

Is it safe to put Hydrogen Peroxide in your ear?

Yes, it is safe. But make sure that you are using diluted one and not the concentrated hydrogen peroxide.

How long to leave Peroxide in an Ear?

Just drop 2 or 3 drops of hydrogen peroxide in your ear about 10 minutes.  Then you can clean it off.

Is it bad to put peroxide in your ear?

If you are using concentrated hydrogen peroxide in your ear, then it may harm your ear badly.

Also, the long-term usage of diluted hydrogen peroxide may harm your ear. Don’t apply it daily into your ear. Consult your doctor if your ear cleaning process is not successful or you may feel any irritation and ear infection.

Why does hydrogen peroxide bubble in your ear?

When getting contact with the ear wax, hydrogen peroxide reacts with it and releases oxygen. This oxygen release leads to foaming (bubbles) which in turn removes dead skin while cleaning the area.

This bubbling up of wax results in softening and loosen your ear wax. So that it can drain out from the ear easily.

Can I use Hydrogen Peroxide for an Ear Infection?

No, if you have ear infection consult your doctor. Hydrogen peroxide is not recommended for ear infections. It will make the condition worse.

How often can you put Hydrogen Peroxide in your Ear?

It is advised to follow the instructions on the teardrop package. Usually, 2-3 drops per day are sufficient to clean the ear wax. If your problem continues for more than 3 days, consult your doctor.

Can Hydrogen Peroxide damage your Ears?

Concentrated Hydrogen Peroxide only damages your ears and not the diluted one. But it is advisable to use a wash cloth to remove ear wax.

In a nutshell,

Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most common methods for cleaning out your ears. Hydrogen peroxide in ear helps to soften and loosen the ear wax. Cleaning ears with hydrogen peroxide are one of the safest ways to get rid of dust and ear waxes.

If you feel difficulty with this method, then try the best ear wax removal kit to remove the excess wax without any side effects.

Your ear is designed to be self-cleaning. So that it can drain away the wax, debris or other dust without manual cleaning process. Applying Hydrogen peroxide in ear speeds up the self-cleaning process. Remember that the regular usage of hydrogen peroxide in the ear may cause severe damage to ear drums.

About the author

Jessica West

She graduated with a Master’s Degree in Nutrition & Dietetics. She bridges the gap between science and real-world application by applying the latest research into his writing. She focusing on diet, exercise and weight management articles for AskMyHealth. She enjoys extensive traveling and stays fit by practicing yoga, doing body weight exercises and hiking.

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