Ear cleaning with oil but no water
June 22, 2011 7:59 AM Subscribe
Ear cleaning with olive oil: do you successfully do this? If so, can you recommend any tricks for someone who currently can't follow it up by flushing with water (due to an ear infection)?
posted by sparrows to Health & Fitness (17 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
In one ear I have both an ear infection and a total wax impaction. My eardrum is infected too, but not perforated.
The doctor (an ENT specialist) told me she couldn't irrigate the ear or do anything else to clean out the wax until I've spent a week on antibiotics to clear up the infection.
She said I'm welcome to try drops of olive oil or mineral oil to dissolve the wax at home, but I must not get water in my ear until after it's no longer infected. She says oil is more effective than hydrogen peroxide or any of the commercial solutions like Murine (Murine is what I'm familiar with successfully using for past wax impactions at home).
When I google this, medical sites recommend following oil treatment with flushing out by water. I've tried lying with oil in my ear four times over the last two days (no water, just letting the oil run out after 20+ minutes) and it's made no difference yet.
The wax impaction sounds exactly like having a foam earplug in my ear. It doesn't hurt but it's crazily distracting (it's already been five days, and it will be six more days before I can go back to the doctor and have it irrigated).
Do you have ANY ideas for me other than just continuing the oil treatments and waiting? Thanks.