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Had wax build up in ear. Experiencing muffled hearing and pain. Is this normal?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2001
Answered : 2272 Questions
Hi a few months ago i was told that i had wax build up in my ear. whilst away two weeks ago i started to experience muffled hearing and pain so i went to a GP, he told me to take some ear drops to break up the wax and to come back in a few days which i did and he tried to flush it out with water and it wouldn’t budge, i also went to the ER and they couldn’t remove it even with a curette. I am now putting olive oil in my ear and have been for nearly two weeks. i was wondering if there is any other reason they cannot remove this 'wax build up'. I believe it to be causing me to feel unwell and quite unbalanced and sometimes light headed with a head ache and head pressure on the side of the ear. is this also normal with a calcified wax build-up ?     
Posted Sun, 4 Nov 2012 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Ram Choudhary 59 minutes later
Welcome to healthcare Magic!
You have probably built up wax inside which is irritating the local area, at times it can cause local infection called otitis externa.
Or you might be having Acute Otitis Media, that is a severe infection of the middle ear.This leads to inflammation and increased local pressure so has resultant pain and may cause the tympanic membrane perforation.
Putting oil or medicines in ear may carry the infection in and can be XXXXXXX
You should visit the ENT doctor on urgent basis- who would do a local cleaning like removing wax and pus and prescribe you the antibiotics, meanwhile take the pain killers off-course and rest in bed with affected ear facing down so to drain ear fluid if any.
Never try to flush ear with water by yourself.
Please get the local examination and if you like, inform me in a Fresh Query / Follow up Query for further fine tuned opinion.
Wish you a great health!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Had wax build up in ear. Experiencing muffled hearing and pain. Is this normal? 18 minutes later
ive had four doctors say its hard and they can only just see the drum but there isnt an infection the pain subsided after a little of the wax was taken out, however i still have muffled hearing.

there is nothing to drain out i do lay on that side, the nurse i saw actually recommended me to use olive oil to try and loosen it.

However im afraid they wont be able to get it out now, should it be loosened from using the drops and oil enough for it to be flushed out?

I just dont like having a full ear feeling and am troubled by being off balance as i work full time. and since going to the doctor a week ago have resumed work.
Answered by Dr. Ram Choudhary 5 hours later
Welcome back to Healthcare Magic Physician's Desk!
If the ear drum is visible and intact then you can use the olive oil drops.
but put one drop every three days, because excess of it may lead to excess wax by providing fatty base to dead cells.
i think you have a problem in middle ear and strongly advise you to get examined by an ENT surgeon who would advise you about the further management.
At times a mild sore throat can cause blockage of the Eustachian tube of ear which opens in throat and functions to keep ear pressure controlled.
When it is blocked patient has hearing problems and uneasiness in ear.
It is treated with decongestant medicines and saline gargles.
A chewing gum being chewed while you lie down in bed with affected ear up and after one hour of decongestant medicine is quite helpful and should be done three time a day.
Wish you a great health!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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