Can cotton tip swabs be safely used to clean inside the ear? Should it be a routine part of personal hygiene, or is it too risky? The medical consensus recommends against this practice as it may lead to complications or injury.
What’s striking is the schism that exists between the recommendations of the medical community and the general public’s perception about ear-cleaning habits (as well as grandmothers far and wide). Despite ample advice, the practice of ear cleaning with swabs is pervasive.
These are the first two paragraphs from Dr. Neil Sperling’s recent article “To Swab or Not to Swab: Appropriate Medical Advice Regarding Self-Ear-Cleaning” which was published in the January – March 2016 edition of the International Journal of Head and Neck Surgery.
In the article, Dr. Sperling discusses the common medical consensus which recommends against the practice of self-ear-cleaning as it may lead to complications or injury against the general public’s perception about ear-cleaning habits. Even though there is significant evidence indicating the potential hazards of cleaning with swabs it is a pervasive practice among the general public.