Ear wax build up is a common problem. Many people find their ears get clogged with wax and their hearing becomes muffled. The ear is usually self-cleaning, wax travels into the outside world on it's own. Unfortunately sometimes it becomes impacted against the drum. This is much more likely if earbuds are pushed right down the ear canal. This is not a good idea and is not necessary as the ear canal usually cleans itself.
If wax does become impacted then it is a good idea to try some drops to soften it. Try warm olive oil every day for a week or two. Alternatively drops are available over the counter at the pharmacist such as hydrogen peroxide. These might be enough to soften the wax so it comes out on it's own, otherwise it might need suctioning out. A narrow suction tube is used to suck the wax out. Your GP may be able to refer you but it is worth considering going private otherwise.
Suction is much better than syringing but unfortunately it is not widely available. Some people travel hundreds of miles to have their ears syringed. People who have had it done speak highly of it and say that their ears feel so much better afterwards.
Syringing is no longer recommended. This is because the trauma to the eardrum can cause tinnitus. This might be temporary but unfortunately it sometimes becomes permanent. When the water is squirted into the ear it causes dramatic vibration of the drum. This energy can damage the delicate sensory part of the ear. Warm water is squirted into the ear from a syringe, dislodging the wax and carrying it to the outside world. It is an effective treatment.
This article is not to be treated s medical advice, for information purposes only.
Dr T. Bateson for zenplugs.com