Using cotton buds to clean ears dangerous, can damage eardrum, physician warns

A health expert, Dr. Chinonso Egemba, has warned against using cotton buds and other objects to clean the ears to avoid damage to the eardrum.

Dr. Egemba, popularly known as ‘Aproko Doctor’, said ear wax is not dirt but it keeps the ears free from insects and dirt.

In a thread on his Twitter page @aproko_doctor, he explained that cotton bud pushes the wax inside the ear and does not extract it.

“Use the cotton buds you bought and clean your phone’s charging port. It’s not for your ears.

“Earwax is not dirt. It actually keeps your ear free from insects and dirt for instance! Also, because it is acidic, it prevents fungi from growing in your ear.

“So removing your wax does more harm than good,” he said.

According to an online portal, Healthline, earwax, or cerumen, is a normal, naturally occurring substance that helps your ear stay healthy.

“Earwax helps to prevent debris, dirt, and other things from entering the ear canal and also helps to prevent infection. In fact, the ears are self-cleaning, and old earwax, along with dead skin cells, gets moved from inside the ear to the ear opening, where it eventually falls out.

“Earwax can vary in colour, in shades of yellow, white, brown, and even black. It can be soft, hard, or flaky. There’s a lot of variation with earwax, depending on several variables.

“In general, when earwax builds up, it naturally gets forced out of the ear,” it noted.

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