Wax Removal Appointment

At Hearing Healthcare Centre, we can perform a range of ear wax removal procedures. We are fully trained and qualified in the three main techniques; irrigation, microsuction and manual ear wax removal.

We always recommend administering olive oil drops for at least 3 days prior to any ear wax removal appointment.

A common misconception is that the use of olive oil drops will ‘unblock’ your ears from wax. It doesn’t. It simply lubricates and softens the wax, which better enables your audiologist to remove using one of the industry standard techniques.

Counter-productively, using olive oil drops can make the wax ‘swell’ and further block the ear, however it is necessary prior to any procedure. We recommend using olive oil for between 3 and 6 days, unless otherwise informed by your audiologist.

Olive oil should not be used if there is a suspected perforation.

The first step is to examine the outer and inner ear for obstructions. It is only after inspection that we can assess which technique is appropriate, based on the condition of the wax and its depth.

The audiologist will always attempt to remove the wax to the best of their ability, however, if the wax is too stubborn to safely remove in one session, a follow up appointment will be recommended. Full payment is required on the first appointment. Any follow up appointment that is necessary is free of charge. Refunds are not available for audiologist’s time, or procedures performed.

As responsible healthcare professionals, Hearing Healthcare Centre advises all clients who have experienced problems with their hearing (under the presumption of wax blockage), undertake a post-procedure (15 minute) hearing screening. This screening is used to ascertain the true cause of the hearing loss, and determine whether there is any risk of a referable condition. There is no charge, and Hearing Healthcare Centre adopt an opt-out policy. If you do not wish to participate in this screening, please make your preference known to our audiologists during your appointment.

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Irrigation Wax Removal

If irrigation is the correct procedure; we would warm the water to a constant temperature (body temperature) so as not to shock the inner ear. This is automatically regulated by the irrigation machine. Whilst holding a specialist ear cup under the ear (to catch any wax and water), we would insert the probe into the canal, and begin introducing the water. The water is ‘shot’ into the ear as a controlled pulse, and directed at the ear canal (not the ear drum) at a 25 degree angle.

The warm water dislodges the wax, and the natural contours of the ear allow it to be flushed out and collected in the cup.

Once the wax has been removed the canal is carefully mopped out to leave the ear dry.

Appointment Duration: 30 minutes

Appointment Cost: £50

Prerequisites: Olive oil drops for at least 3 days prior to irrigation

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Microsuction Wax Removal

If microsuction is the correct procedure; we use an appropriate size speculum to hold the ear canal open and a loupe (head worn microscope & lamp) to see clearly down the canal. We then introduce a fine tube through the speculum attached via a flexible tube to a vacuum pump. The wax and debris is gently suctioned out until the canal is clear and the ear drum can be seen.

Appointment Duration: 30 minutes

Appointment Cost: £80

Prerequisites: Olive oil drops for at least 3 days prior to irrigation

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Manual Wax Removal

If manual ear wax removal is the correct procedure; This is carried out using the loupe and either a Jobson Horn (miniature scoop) and/or fine calipers to capture the wax and gently remove it.

This is sometimes necessary if the entrance of the ear canal causes some of the wax to get stuck, but can be easily reached after irrigation or microsuction.

Appointment Duration: 30 minutes

Appointment Cost: £50

Prerequisites: Olive oil drops for at least 3 days prior to irrigation

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All wax removal techniques are classified as ‘invasive’ due to the introduction of probes into the ear canal; however, they are normally quick and painless procedures, and risk of infection is low.

Please note: multiple visits may be required depending on the stubbornness of the wax. We reserve the right to charge an additional fee (£15) to cover the cost of consumables used in subsequent procedures, if it is deemed that olive oil drops have not been used/used effectively to aid in the audiologist’s removal attempts.

A small amount of ear wax is not only normal, but healthy and recommended. We do not attempt to remove 100% of the wax. Providing the ear drum is clear and visible, and that no blockage is present, we consider the wax removal service complete.

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