Many people who are guilty of using cotton swabs to clean their ears, despite being told that it is dangerous.
But a video showing a Q-tip that sits deep in a man’s ear canal serves as a reminder of how risky practice is.
Neel Raithatha, advisor audiologist and YouTube sensation known as the ‘Wax Whisperer’, filmed his stuffing from the ear of the unknown man with the help of tweezers.
While the man had used the cotton swab to create an itch in his ear, the cotton wool had fallen off the plastic stick and got stuck.
It just rested with his eardrum. The area is delicate and, if perforated, can lead to hearing loss.
This patient recovered undamaged. However, cotton buds can cause a number of problems, including infections, affected earwax and tinnitus.
Horrifying images show Neel Raithatha, a consultant audiologist and YouTube sensation, get a stuck Q-tip deep out of a man’s ear canal (photo)
Mr Raithatha used an endoscope, an instrument that can look into the body and is usually attached to a video monitor, so that he could see what is in the ear canal and film it. The video shows him gently pampering and picking it up with tweezers
Raithatha, who operates from his clinic in Leicester, said the man was suffering from an infection and inflammation.
He said he did [the patient] suffers from external otitis and used the cotton swab in an effort to relieve the itching and irritation he experienced. “
Mr. Raithatha did not reveal what happened next, but said the man was in pain and discomfort by the time he sought help.
WHY SHOULD YOU AVOID THE USE OF COTTON BUDS?
Earwax usually falls out by itself, but in some cases it can be blocked.
It cannot be prevented because the wax is there to protect the ears from water, dirt, germs, infections and foreign objects.
Some people are more likely to develop, for example the elderly or people who use hearing aids.
But those who use cotton swabs can often also suffer from wax build-up. This is because cotton swabs can push the wax further into the canal, where it becomes hard.
Cotton swabs can cause other problems, including infections, perforated ear drums, which can lead to hearing loss and tinnitus.
In the worst case, a bud had led to necrotizing otitis externa, a bacterial infection that begins in the ear canal before it spreads to the skull, where it eats through the bone.
Facial nerves can also be affected, causing a stroke-like sag. Also known as malignant otitis externa, it is usually seen in the elderly.
If you need help with earwax build-up, the NHS recommends consulting a pharmacist who can suggest solutions.
Or you can try to put two or three drops of olive or almond oil in your ear twice a day for a few days.
Pieces of earwax should fall out of your ear in two weeks, especially at night when you are lying down.
Normally, Mr. Raithatha normally uses an instrument with gentle suction to attach himself to the object that impedes the passage and pulls it out.
“The ear canal was heavily inflamed and it was not possible to insert a normal suction probe,” he said.
‘I therefore confirmed a finer suction tip to gain access.
“I managed to extract the cotton bud sufficiently and then use the crocodile tongs to get the cotton bud completely out of the ear.”
Mr. Raithatha used an endoscope, an instrument that can look into the body and is usually attached to a video monitor so that he can see what is in the ear canal and film it.
The video shows him gently pampering. It starts to separate and becomes fibrous just as it pulls it far enough to pick it up with the tweezers.
“The customer was overjoyed,” Mr. Raithatha said.
“He planned to go out on New Year’s Eve, but felt that he could not because of the discomfort and the pain he experienced because the cotton bud was in his ear.
“He was very grateful that I could help him in such a short time.”
Mr. Raithatha is also called “The Wax Whisperer” because he regularly posts videos of his work on YouTube to more than 150,000 subscribers.
His latest production, filmed on December 31, 2019, already has more than 22,000 views.
In the past he removed a twig, a cap, an earring, a plastic clothing label and the ‘worst’ item, a piece of comb tooth.
Such items can puncture the eardrum, causing sudden ear pain, sometimes bleeding from the ear, hearing loss or sound in the ear.
It normally heals by itself, but may require surgery, and is the reason health officials insist on the use of cotton buds.
The NHS, general practitioners, and even manufacturers warn against ear-digging with cotton buds – but millions still do it to clear it up or relive it again.
Cotton buds can ram earwax further into the ear, where it becomes compact and hard and blocks the ear.
Earwax usually falls out by itself because it leaves the ear as the skin grows. If you think this is not the case, the NHS recommends using olive oil to moisten the laundry or to go to a pharmacist.