Q-tips are the thing you put in your ear to get rid of wax. But did you know that this is the one thing you should not be using cotton swabs for? Sticking cotton swabs into your ear has the potential to cause a lot of damage and can pack your ear wax in even further. We recognize that having an ear clogged up with a bunch of ear wax is less than ideal as well. The ideal way to deal with excess wax is to have your ears professionally cleaned. However, if you produce a great deal of ear wax and can’t get to the doctor as often as you should, consider using one of these ear wax removal tricks.

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The design on this tool keeps it from going too deep—and causing damage—in your little one’s aural canal. Oogiebear

Using a scoop tool for ear wax removal is a great option, when used safely. For your baby, you want one designed to keep the tool from going too far in your baby’s ear where it could potentially do some damage. The scoop side of the tool helps to get in those hard-to-reach places where wax may have built up too much. For an added layer of safety, opt for a scoop tool that is BPA-free, as well as latex-free and PVC-free.

This option takes just a few minutes and can be used multiple times per day. Debrox

Drops that contain hydrogen or carbamide peroxide work well for getting rid of that extra wax. This method of ear wax removal works to break up ear wax and clear you up. Here’s how you use it. Begin by lying down on your side, with the ear you’re cleaning facing up. Add the drops and remain laying on your side for five minutes. This amount of time helps the built-up ear wax to soften up. Then, sit up (with a tissue in hand), and you’ll feel the liquid come out, along with the ear wax.

A variety of accessories to help you clean and hear better, including curettes. Migleo

For this method of ear wax removal, fill the bottle with warm water, put the tubing tip in your ear and slowly pump the water inside. You want to keep the basin underneath, to catch what will come out of your ear. Add in hydrogen peroxide with the water in the bottle for elevated cleaning. The most important part of using this method is to be gentle. You don’t want to harm your eardrum. Also, ensure the water is just the right temperature, and isn’t too hot or too cold.