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What Can Your Earwax Tell You?

By Sara Butler

Earwax isn’t exactly everyone’s favorite topic, but you can actually learn a lot about your health by studying some of the things your body makes – things just like earwax. The state of your earwax can point to potential health issues, or it can help you to know that things are working just as they should. Here are just a few of the things your earwax may be trying to tell you if you’re listening!

If It’s Watery and a Weird Color

Sometimes when you sweat, it can go down into your ear canal. Same if you’re in the pool or shower. But if you’ve not been doing any of those things and you find that your earwax is watery and a strange color (such as green or yellow), then it might be a sign of infection. Make sure to see a medical professional to have it checked out!

If It Smells Strong

Earwax shouldn’t really smell like anything. If it does, then it could be a signal that you have an infection or damage to the middle part of the ear. Foul-smelling discharge, problems with your sense of balance, ringing in the ears, or a feeling that your ears are full may be an indication of middle ear issues. See a medical professional as soon as you can!

If You Lack Earwax

If it seems as if you really don’t have any earwax to speak of, then you may have a rare condition called keratitis obturans. This is a condition that causes the earwax to build up inside the ear until it forms a very hard plug instead of coming out slowly over time as it’s supposed to. This is a rare problem, but if you have pain or fullness in your ear and notice a distinct lack of wax, then it’s always worth it to get it checked out.

If You Have Flaky Earwax

This is a pretty normal issue and it’s generally just a sign that you’re getting on in years. As you age, the wax your ear produces gets flaky instead of being stickier like peanut butter. The glands that produce earwax tend to dry out as you age, so it’s nothing to get too alarmed about.

Your earwax is a window into your health. Learn to decode what it's trying to tell you!

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Fairfax, Va. 


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