We often wax lyrical about our speakers and and reproduction equipment but seldom do we think about our personal (embedded in our bodies) equipment…our own ears.
Without keeping our ears in top condition no amount of expenditure is going to sound its best when your ears are not in as good condition as they can be.
I recall reading some time ago about someone going on about ear cleaning and how one should never put anything smaller than ones elbow in your ear to clean it…an impossible feat at best…but we have all probably gone and used a cotton bud (or other foreign objects) to clean wax build up from our ears…this is a BIG problem and for those who do so regularly, you have probably done much to push the wax down far into the ear canal.
Today after many years of doing the cotton bud (Q-Tip) method to try and remove wax I finally asked at my parents hearing aid shop if they could recommend somewhere to get my ears cleaned.
I wont post the clinic’s name but they are in the gold coast of Australia where I happen to be for a week or so seeing my parents.
It was rather noisy with the micro suction but not too painful process that only took a few mins per ear…after some olive oil was used to soften things.
I was horrified at what was in there and have sworn to get my ears cleaned on a much more regular basis by a professional. I last had it done maybe 18 years prior by a Doctor friend while waiting for someone getting treatment for something else.
Here is a picture of about 1/3 of what came out of one ear…the other ear had about twice this amount. That’s about the size of pea…5-6mm round and full of hairs and fluff embedded in the wax. The thumb nail you see if from the practitioner - she had large hands but still it was pretty big large.
Those who want a link can PM me…not much use unless you are in the gold coast of Oz … they only do ear cleaning. Its just micro suction process, but done with high power binoculars and bright light beam to view into the ear.
I think the tinnitus is a little less annoying, and I’m probably hearing some noises in a quiet room that I didn’t notice before, but as I’m not and home (traveling to visit my parents) its hard to tell being in a foreign space…I haven’t been able to listen to my hifi setups as I have nothing here, but might try some headfi for fun as I do have some music on my phone.
The therapist told me that having all that in there would probably make the tinnitus more pronounced…maybe I’m now subject to post treatment bias Seems that such services are in short supply here in Oz maybe…like me she is a Kiwi I just saw on the website…ok well here it is http://www.earcleaningclinic.com.au she can have a plug.
Under ideal circumstances, the ear canals should never have to be cleaned. However, that isn’t always the case. The ears should be cleaned when enough earwax accumulates to cause symptoms or to prevent a needed assessment of the ear by your doctor. This condition is call cerumen impaction, and may cause one or more of the following symptoms:
Earache, fullness in the ear, or a sensation the ear is plugged
Partial hearing loss, which may be progressive
Tinnitus, ringing, or noises in the ear
Itching, odor, or discharge
Full disclaimer, I’m not a physician, but I do know that your ears are supposed to produce wax and this is not a routine intervention for most people. Just wanted to provide a cautionary view. Glad you were helped @wizardofoz! Cheers!