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Using rubbing alcohol in your ears?

AmberClad

Diamond Member
Jul 23, 2005
4,915
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I guess it's a little late to ask now, but is using rubbing alcohol inside your ear canals a no-no :confused:? I use that stuff plus Q-Tips all the time to clean computer parts, so I figured no harm done if I tried it on my ears.

Oh, the burn :(...ow...
 

patentman

Golden Member
Apr 8, 2005
1,035
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Rule of thumb, don;t put anything in your ears, especially q-tips.

Like you, I used to clean my ears with q-tips. Apparently I did it wrong, because over the course of a year I began to slowly lose my hearing in one ear. I went to the doctor, to discover that all I was doing was compacting the wax in my ears. It took the better part of 30 minutes to flush all that crud out, and believe me, it was not comfortable.

 

AmberClad

Diamond Member
Jul 23, 2005
4,915
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I suspect you may be right on this one. I tried it out in my other ear (before I read your post), and I didn't feel the same burning sensation inside that one that I did in the other ear. I think I might have overdone it with the Q-Tip scrubbing before. Better leave well enough alone for now...
 

AmberClad

Diamond Member
Jul 23, 2005
4,915
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With or without a dash of pepper and a few leaves of cilantro :p...

But jokes aside, does that actually work? And doesn't that create a mess that has to be cleaned out with something else?
 

datalink7

Lifer
Jan 23, 2001
16,765
5
81
My ear doctor actually said that Dawn Dish Soap worked best. Just pour some in there and let it sit and then wash it out. Doing it in the shower works best.
 

Yzzim

Lifer
Feb 13, 2000
11,990
1
76
Originally posted by: datalink7
My ear doctor actually said that Dawn Dish Soap worked best. Just pour some in there and let it sit and then wash it out. Doing it in the shower works best.
Draino directly in the ear works best
 

Scarpozzi

Lifer
Jun 13, 2000
25,225
1,057
126
There have been quite a few threads about this recently. I'll say the same thing I always do. :p

To clear your ears out, go to the drug store or walmart and get an ear syringe and some drops. They sell them in a kit for $5-8 depending on brand. Follow the instructions of the drops (peroxide based solution) to soften the wax. Then grab a cup and fill it with warm water. (be careful not to get the water too hot) Use the ball syringe and to flush your ears out. If you believe you have compacted wax, you may have to use extreme force to free the wax from your ears.

I've actually had rather large chunks break free because my right ear overproduces wax a few days after I go diving more than 10 meters. When I clear my ears out (I do this about once a year), it sometimes causes my throat to burn (sensation from the severe water pressure and nerves not knowing how to react) and when the wax becomes dislodged, it causes my equilibrium to make me dizzy for a few minutes.
 

lanielf

Member
Feb 14, 2006
155
0
0
Flushing the ear canal with rubbing alcohol displaces the water and dries the canal skin. If alcohol causes severe pain, it suggests the presence of an eardrum perforation.
 

pontifex

Lifer
Dec 5, 2000
43,813
44
91
Originally posted by: Scarpozzi
There have been quite a few threads about this recently. I'll say the same thing I always do. :p

To clear your ears out, go to the drug store or walmart and get an ear syringe and some drops. They sell them in a kit for $5-8 depending on brand. Follow the instructions of the drops (peroxide based solution) to soften the wax. Then grab a cup and fill it with warm water. (be careful not to get the water too hot) Use the ball syringe and to flush your ears out. If you believe you have compacted wax, you may have to use extreme force to free the wax from your ears.

I've actually had rather large chunks break free because my right ear overproduces wax a few days after I go diving more than 10 meters. When I clear my ears out (I do this about once a year), it sometimes causes my throat to burn (sensation from the severe water pressure and nerves not knowing how to react) and when the wax becomes dislodged, it causes my equilibrium to make me dizzy for a few minutes.
a ENT doctor told me to never use those, always see they doctor if you need it cleaned.

i've had them work with success but the last time all it did was turn the wax to mud and push it in further.
 

mlm

Senior member
Feb 19, 2006
933
0
0
My mom used to have me use a mix of 50% alcohol and 50% water to clear out my ears if water got stuck in them. I don't know if it ever really worked though.
 

gsellis

Diamond Member
Dec 4, 2003
6,062
0
0
Originally posted by: lanielf
Flushing the ear canal with rubbing alcohol displaces the water and dries the canal skin. If alcohol causes severe pain, it suggests the presence of an eardrum perforation.
We almost made it correct. While the pain could indicate a perforation, it more likely means an infection, fungus, or damage in the ear canal. Like pouring alcohol on an open wound anywhere else burns, so does it in the ear.

And as a drying agent, especially for water in the ear, great and it kills bacteria. Old swimmer's ear homebrew was 50% alcohol, 50% distilled white vinegar.
 

PottedMeat

Lifer
Apr 17, 2002
12,366
471
126
I always stick the q-tip in fairly far into the ear after a hot shower. Hearings' fine and never had a problem.

 

xanis

Lifer
Sep 11, 2005
17,576
7
0
If you really want to clean out your ears, don't bother with Q-Tips.

Go the store and buy a bottle of straight Hydrogen Peroxide and a small dropper. Put some hydrogen peroxide in your ear, let it sit for 10 minutes, then flush it out with some lukewarm water. My doctor told me to start doing this, and it's been working like a charm.

 

JasonE4

Golden Member
Mar 14, 2005
1,363
0
0
Originally posted by: Xanis
If you really want to clean out your ears, don't bother with Q-Tips.

Go the store and buy a bottle of straight Hydrogen Peroxide and a small dropper. Put some hydrogen peroxide in your ear, let it sit for 10 minutes, then flush it out with some lukewarm water. My doctor told me to start doing this, and it's been working like a charm.
:thumbsup: This is what worked for me, except I had to do it about 30 times to get it all out. It was absolutely disgusting how much wax I got out.
 

xanis

Lifer
Sep 11, 2005
17,576
7
0
Originally posted by: JasonE4
Originally posted by: Xanis
If you really want to clean out your ears, don't bother with Q-Tips.

Go the store and buy a bottle of straight Hydrogen Peroxide and a small dropper. Put some hydrogen peroxide in your ear, let it sit for 10 minutes, then flush it out with some lukewarm water. My doctor told me to start doing this, and it's been working like a charm.
:thumbsup: This is what worked for me, except I had to do it about 30 times to get it all out. It was absolutely disgusting how much wax I got out.
Yeah, it's really nasty how much wax comes out. I had to do it to my ears a few times before they were good and clean.



 

patentman

Golden Member
Apr 8, 2005
1,035
0
0
Originally posted by: AmberClad
I'm surprised that no one has suggested that I try sulfuric acid yet :roll:.
Nah, H2SO4 is for pansies. It's HF or nothing. Either that, or butyl lithium (just use that in an oxygen free atmosphere)
 

wiredspider

Diamond Member
Jun 3, 2001
5,239
0
0
I have what me and bro call an "ear digger", it's like a scoop thing for your ear wax. Probably not much safer than a q-tip, but putting liquids in my ear feels weird.
 

ViviTheMage

Lifer
Dec 12, 2002
36,174
71
91
madgenius.com
Originally posted by: Xanis
If you really want to clean out your ears, don't bother with Q-Tips.

Go the store and buy a bottle of straight Hydrogen Peroxide and a small dropper. Put some hydrogen peroxide in your ear, let it sit for 10 minutes, then flush it out with some lukewarm water. My doctor told me to start doing this, and it's been working like a charm.
would you use a qtip or something to get it all out, or would you just shake your head to get it all out?
 

DanTMWTMP

Lifer
Oct 7, 2001
15,909
12
81
wut..i've always done this to my ears. After I dig out using one of those asian tiny-spoon earwax removers, i'd dig in w/ a qtip w/ rubbing alcohol. I do it to my belly button, my crotch area (took awhile to get used to it, first couple of times, the burn was incapacitating, especially when I got a cut in my anal area, I had to disinfect that area since i didn't want that bacteria-filled area to invade the cut. Oh man, the anal area is ULTIMATE burn. First time i rubbed it w/ rubbing alcohol, I couldn't walk for about 2 minutes w/ tears coming out of my eyes. Now I feel refreshed after i do it).
 

DnetMHZ

Diamond Member
Apr 10, 2001
9,827
1
81
Originally posted by: DanTMWTMP
wut..i've always done this to my ears. After I dig out using one of those asian tiny-spoon earwax removers, i'd dig in w/ a qtip w/ rubbing alcohol. I do it to my belly button, my crotch area (took awhile to get used to it, first couple of times, the burn was incapacitating, especially when I got a cut in my anal area, I had to disinfect that area since i didn't want that bacteria-filled area to invade the cut. Oh man, the anal area is ULTIMATE burn. First time i rubbed it w/ rubbing alcohol, I couldn't walk for about 2 minutes w/ tears coming out of my eyes. Now I feel refreshed after i do it).
/Backs out of thread slowly
 

middlehead

Diamond Member
Jul 11, 2004
4,574
2
81
Originally posted by: DanTMWTMP
wut..i've always done this to my ears. After I dig out using one of those asian tiny-spoon earwax removers, i'd dig in w/ a qtip w/ rubbing alcohol. I do it to my belly button, my crotch area (took awhile to get used to it, first couple of times, the burn was incapacitating, especially when I got a cut in my anal area, I had to disinfect that area since i didn't want that bacteria-filled area to invade the cut. Oh man, the anal area is ULTIMATE burn. First time i rubbed it w/ rubbing alcohol, I couldn't walk for about 2 minutes w/ tears coming out of my eyes. Now I feel refreshed after i do it).
What a coincidence, my eyes are burning after reading this post.
 

James Bond

Diamond Member
Jan 21, 2005
6,025
0
0
I'm starting to wonder if my left ear may have some serious wax build up.

When I use Q-Tips after a shower, the left one definitely feels different, almost like it "can't get in" if that makes any sense... I guess wax could be blocking?

If there was wax buildup in my ear, could that in any way affect how my ears/head reacts with pressure changes? When I go on an airplane I have a VERY difficult time popping my left ear during ascension.
 

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