Ear Cleaning (Aural Toilet)
At Penryn we have a nurse led Aural Toilet clinic. Using either microsuction or irrigation wax and debris is removed from ears.
In the past patients had to attend the hospital in order to have microsuction but Penryn Surgery now has it’s own microsuction machine and microscope.
You may want to book into the Aural Toilet clinic yourself for either irrigation or suctioning if you feel that that your ears have become blocked. A doctor may also suggest you attend the Aural Toilet clinic if they have found your ears to be blocked with wax or infected debris.
*Please note we will be unable to offer the microsuction method after the end of 2017 due to NHS funding cuts.
Ear wax is normal, although the amount produced can vary from person to person.
Do not try to clean wax out of your ears with either fingers or cotton buds. This can just push the wax further down the canal and it can scratch and irritate the skin of the canal.
If you feel you have problems with excessive wax you can first try Ear Drops to soften the wax. You can buy olive oil ear drops from the pharmacy. You can use the drops 2-3 times per day to soften wax or just once every week or so to try and prevent wax building up. It is also useful to use drops before attending for microsuction/irrigation.
If drops do not do the trick alone, you can book for irrigation (which used to be called “syringing”). A machine is used to gently squirt warm water into the ears at a certain pressure to dislodge the wax and wash it out.
You should not have ear syringing if you are known to have a perforated ear drum or if you have a current infection in the ear.
If you are unable to have syringing, you may be offered microsuction. Using a specially designed microscope the nurse is able to look into your ear canal and then gently suck out the wax.