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Ear cleaning Q&A with hearing expert Kim Galick

Langley expert shares advice on safely managing wax build-up
Kim Galick, owner of Ears Hearing Clinic in Langley. Downtown shoppers are always welcome to pop by for a visit!

Put down the Q-tips and think twice about that ear candle you saw on Amazon. Despite what you may have heard, your ears are quite capable of cleaning themselves.

“While your intentions with cleaning your ears were in the right place, unfortunately, in most cases, cleaning anything beyond the outermost part of your ear has likely caused more problems than it solved,” says Kim Galick, Registered Hearing Instrument Practitioner, and Owner of Ears Hearing Clinic in Langley.

Although this information has been widely available for many years, it seems the message still isn’t getting through. So, Kim is here to answer her top four most asked questions regarding ear cleaning, earwax, and what you need to know!

Q: Should I be cleaning my ears at home regularly?

A: The short answer? No, your ears are most likely keeping themselves clean all on their own. What you’re trying to ‘clean’ is cerumen, aka earwax, but earwax is produced for a reason – to protect and lubricate your ear. Without it, our ears would be itchy, dry, and prone to infection.

Q: Could my hearing loss be related to earwax?

A: It’s possible, but the only way to know for certain is to visit a Hearing Healthcare Professional, says Kim. Our well-intentioned attempts at cleaning perceived ‘excess’ cerumen can sometimes result in the cerumen (earwax) being pushed into the inner ear, resulting in a blockage.

Q: How do I know if my ears do need to be cleaned?

A: If your ears feel plugged, you’re experiencing pain or a sensation of ‘fullness’ in your ear, or if you’re experiencing ringing (tinnitus), itching, discharge, or partial hearing loss that worsens with time, then there is a chance your ears need cleaning. In all of these situations, though, you should seek a doctor or Hearing Healthcare Professional who can properly diagnose you.

Q: Is there a way to clean ears safely from home?

A: Again, chances are your ears don’t need to be cleaned, but if you’re worried about cerumen (earwax) showing on the outside of your ear canal, you can try using a clean washcloth with a few drops of mineral oil, glycerin, baby oil, or hydrogen peroxide. Only clean the outermost part of your ear and never stick anything inside your ear – yes, that includes cotton swabs!

Book your free hearing consultation with Kim Galick at Ears Hearing Clinic in Langley at 604-427-2828 or by email at Find Ears Hearing at Unit C 20568 56 Ave. in Langley, online at or follow them on Facebook.

READ MORE from Ears Hearing Clinic:

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Turn down the music, tune up the ear protection