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If someone has ever rudely said that to you because you misunderstood them, or just didn't hear them properly they may have had a point. A lot of people walk around with their ears blocked up without realising they have a hearing problem. Although ear wax is a totally natural substance that exists to protect the lining of your ear canals, and keep them lubricated, over time it can accumulate unnecessarily to the point that your ears become seriously blocked with the hardened wax. The time you start to become aware of this is when you realise you are having difficulty in hearing what people are saying clearly, much of the time, particularly when amongst a group of people, although your hearing may have already been impaired well before then. If you are a reasonably healthy adult not past middle age, the chances are that it is just a build-up of ear wax that is causing your loss of hearing, although obviously there may be other causes such as an ear infection, but then there may be other symptoms present such as an earache or a discharge from your ear, neither of which would be caused by ear wax. If you are uncertain why your hearing is impaired visit your doctor or a clinical nurse first to check whether your ears are blocked with wax
Otex Express Ear Drops have been on the market for several years now along with a few other similarly related products, all designed to clear your ears from excessive ear wax. It's probably the most familiar name amongst these products due to extensive tv advertising in the past. Otex is available in all the major supermarkets and pharmacy outlets.
Otex contains the active ingredient hydrogen peroxide, whose purpose is to soften and dissolve the wax in your ear canal swiftly. Glycerol, another wax solvent is also present. Different wax-removing brands use different chemicals for this purpose, if you do have an ear infection, using hydrogen peroxide in your ear canal could well cause severe discomfort, although not everyone is as sensitive, but that is one good reason to check out with a nurse or doctor first. Assuming that your hearing loss is caused by excessive ear wax and not anything else it should be safe then to use Otex drops. An instruction leaflet comes with the pack, so be prepared for plenty of head-tilting.
As others have pointed out once you apply the drops into your ear canal a bubbling sensation is usually heard when the drops make contact with the wax surface. Bear in mind that this is only the beginning of the process and it is necessary for the whole of the wax mass to soften through. Depending on the volume of wax it can take at least a week to soften sufficiently to the stage where your ears can be syringed. Without syringing Otex may get rid of some of the wax but it is unlikely to dislodge all of it, especially if there is a large mass of wax pressing down on your eardrum.To begin with with you may find your hearing worsens and your ear feels even more bunged up, but that's normal.The softening process causes the hard wax to expand in the ear canal as it softens thus causing further hearing loss. That's why it's important once the wax has softened sufficiently to have your ears syringed. What sometimes happens as well is that once you apply the drops over a period some of the wax dissolves, thus partially clearing the ear canal with an improvement in hearing. But you still need to syringe to finish the job properly. Although Otex do not supply a syringe with this particular product they do supply one with their more expensive combi pack. If you feel happy to syringe your own ears then it may be worthwhile buying the combi instead. The syringe supplied is really just a rubber squirter, but supposedly has sufficient power to remove the softened wax.
But I feel it's best to get the job done professionally by a nurse who will.rinse out your ear with a machine that pumps water through the ear canal with considerable force. But if syringing is to be done this way you had better be sure that your ear wax has softened first, otherwise trying to dislodge hard wax by high pressure can cause searing pain within your ear canal. I once had the dubious pleasure of that experience and I wouldn't want to repeat it. The nurse would have warned you about this in advance, anyway.
Is it worth buying Otex ear drops?
The answer is possibly, but good old olive oil will do the job of softening ear wax just as well.over the same period of time. Otex worked fine for me too, but as mentioned hydrogen peroxide can irritate the lining of your ear canal if you have an abrasion or an infection within. Olive oil is much milder and is just as effective.as well as cheaper, and there is no 'bubbling effect' in your ear like with Otex.. If you have a bottle of oil in the house for culinary purposes you need look no further. For best results I would heat the oil first so that it feels warm to the touch (but never hot), as that will dissolve the wax more quickly, but cool oil works almost as well..All you need is a small stopper bottle to put the oil in to assist in applying the drops to your ears - maybe an old Otex bottle. As usual syringing can start after a week of application, which should be 2 to 3 drops of oil to the ears twice a day.One thing's for sure. Once your ears have been finally purged of wax you will appreciate how clear everything now sounds especially if you have been going around with blocked-up ears for a long time.