Sulfur cork in a child’s ear: causes and treatment
Sulfur plug in the ear is a fairly common phenomenon, especially in a child. This can cause certain troubles, and in the absence of proper treatment, it can even result in hearing loss.
Earwax has a certain functionality: it has an antiseptic property. Sulfurization is a natural process that allows the inner ear and eardrum to provide adequate protection against germs and hypothermia. In addition, sulfur provides additional moisture, acting as a lubricant to ensure the mobility of the membrane.
Typically, sulfur is produced enough to perform its functions, and all excess goes by itself during chewing or talking. However, in some cases, either abundant sulfur formation or difficulties with its removal can occur. In this case, the ear canal will be blocked.
Sulfur cork: causes
The cork in the ear consists not only of sulfur, but also of dead cells. Depending on the shade, you can understand whether the cause is an inflammatory process, an infection, or simply a lack of proper hygiene.
In the event that you feel an unpleasant odor, and the discharge is dark green or red, then this is an alarming sign that signals serious illnesses.
The reasons for the appearance of cork may be:
Diseases – otitis media, dermatitis
Plentiful hair in the ear
Weather changes or acclimatization
Physiological features of the auditory meatus
When you try to clean the child’s ear canals with cotton buds, you can only make it worse, since sulfur and epithelial particles will be denser, and in close proximity to the ear membrane. From here, sulfur accumulations cannot be removed naturally.
Proper hygiene procedures should affect only the visible part of the outer ear.
Another reason may be the frequent wearing of headphones, which act as a “press” for sulfur and contribute to the activation of the glands.
Parents should especially monitor how the child cleans the ears, doesn’t insert the ear stick too deep, or does he use other cleaning methods – matches, paper clips, hairpins. Any objects can not only give rise to a cork, but also violate the integrity of the eardrum.
Teenagers often listen to music on headphones or use a telephone headset. It also negatively affects the condition of the ear canal.
If you notice that your child’s traffic jams are too frequent, then you should contact an otolaryngologist who will prescribe cerumenolytics – drugs that help soften sulfur and subsequent excretion.
Symptoms of a cork in a child’s ear
In total, several types of sulfur deposits are distinguished:
The nature of the discharge depends on many factors: physiological racial characteristics, the duration of the disease and many others.
Unfortunately, in most cases at the initial stage it is very difficult to diagnose the presence of an ear plug, since there are no identified symptoms. And only at that moment when the discharge completely blocks the ear canal, the first thing is that the sound level decreases.
In the future, the disease can only worsen. If sulfur will press on the membrane, then this can manifest itself in headache, nausea. In advanced cases, this will also affect the cardiac system, worsening the rhythm, causing dizziness.
Usually, after water procedures, some congestion is observed due to the swelling of the sulfur residues. Therefore, most often, children suffer from these diseases in the summer, during a vacation at sea and numerous dives. So it’s worthwhile to think about the prevention of ear deposits before the trip.
In all cases, you should contact an otolaryngologist who can professionally remove the cork. To do this, either a syringe for washing or an electric suction pump for aspiration is used.
If the child often has this problem, you need to find out how to remove the plug in the ear at home from your doctor. It is imperative to undergo an examination with a specialist in order to know which method is most effective and safe in each case. There are no universal treatment options – do not neglect the advice of doctors and rely only on your own experience and opinion.
There are several ways:
In the first case, you should tilt the child’s head to the side, and carefully pour warm water or saline into the ear with a syringe. In this case, it is necessary to ensure that the syringe does not enter too deeply. After that, it is worth blotting your ear with a napkin or towel, and then covering it with a cotton swab.
To dissolve sulfur plugs in the ear, drugs are used that can dissolve or soften sulfur. Keep in mind that this can only help in cases where the deposits are still quite soft and do not require a physical method.
Means can be both water-based and oil-based. In this case, the drugs only dissolve the sulfur, allowing you to get rid of it painlessly.