Ayr audiologists have warned of the dangers of in-ear headphones after an almost 700 per cent increase in people needing impacted earwax removed.

Staff at Specsavers in Ayr are encouraging limited use of in-ear devices after visits from lots of people suffering with painful ears and struggling to hear properly.

The earwax removal services resumed at the beginning of May, with 79 visitors to the High Street store at the start of the month.

In the last week of May, 629 people came in for the service.

Thomas Allison, audiology director at Specsavers in Ayr, said: “While it is natural to have wax in our ears, regularly putting objects such as earphones in them – particularly for prolonged periods of time during video calls for example – can cause wax to become impacted. This can lead to hearing loss and discomfort, as well as infection or even a perforated ear drum.”

The advice from Specsavers is to avoid putting anything in your ears that could push earwax further into your ear canal and to avoid home removal of wax. Research by Specsavers shows that two thirds of the nation are risking permanent damage to their hearing by using cotton buds and other items such as their fingers, pencils, paper clips, hairgrips and even matches to remove wax.

Mr Allison said: “Ear wax does usually fall out on its own.

“If it doesn’t and causes a persistent blockage, it’s best to seek professional advice.

“Ear drops or olive oil can help to soften the wax but this is generally carried out for three to five days before a wax removal appointment as these drops can cause the earwax to expand, making the blockage worse and potentially causing further irritation.”

In line with guidelines, Specsavers in Ayr reintroduced key audiology services. For more information, call Specsavers Ayr on 01292 619 007.


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