DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic staff
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|Earwax removal by a doctor|
Earwax blockage occurs when earwax (cerumen) accumulates in your ear or becomes too hard to wash away naturally.
Earwax is a helpful and natural part of your body's defenses. It protects your ear canal by trapping dirt and slowing the growth of bacteria. It's not known why some people experience earwax blockage or why earwax blockage often occurs in only one ear.
If earwax blockage becomes a problem, you or your doctor can take simple steps to remove the wax safely.
- Earwax. American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/earwax.cfm. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Dinces EA. Cerumen. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Clinical practice guideline: Cerumen impaction. Alexandria, Va.: Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/Practice/upload/FINAL-CerumenImpaction-Journal-2008.pdf. Accessed April 26, 2011.