Earwax. What is it exactly? Earwax is a vital component of your ear's natural systems. It's both antibacterial and anti-fungal and promotes the removal of dead skin cells from the inside of your ear. (Who knew it was so useful?) It also serves to protect your ear canals from dust, foreign particles, and other microorganisms, and from irritation from water and sweat. As long as your earwax isn't blocking your ear canal, then you have nothing to worry about.
Symptoms of Earwax Buildup
Earwax can vary in color from light yellow to dark brown. Darker colored earwax does not, however, indicate that there is a blockage present. Symptoms of earwax buildup include:
- Sudden or partial hearing loss that is usually temporary
- Tinnitus, or a ringing or buzzing sound in the ear
- A feeling of fullness in the ear
If you are prone to overproduction of earwax, excessive earwax left within the ear structure can lead to infection. You should contact your doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Severe ear pain
- Drainage from the ear
- Lasting hearing loss
- A strange smell or odor coming from your ear
Some of these symptoms could be an indication of a more severe problem. If you experience any of these symptoms, please contact South Florida ENT Associates immediately to schedule an appointment for treatment.