Ear syringing: Why audiologists no longer recommend it and what to do instead

Written by Mr Awajimijana Otana

July 1, 2022

Earwax removal at Verified Hearing

Are you planning to have your ear syringed? STOP NOW!

When people inquire about private ear syringing at our London walk-in clinic, they discover it’s no longer available on the NHS. This is because ear syringing is no longer recommended as a method of ear wax removal in London and the UK.

Ear syringing has been linked to increased ear infections, ear drum perforations, and trauma to the ear canal. Some patients with blocked ears have often complained that even after undergoing the ear syringing procedure at a private clinic, their ears were still blocked.


Here’s why ear syringing is no longer recommended

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines sheds more light on the different side effects of using a syringe to clean your ear. The procedure has:

  • 29% ear wax removal failure rate.
  • 17% chance for middle ear (otitis media) infection.
  • 15% chance for ear drum perforation.
  • 11% chance for trauma to the external auditory meatus (ear canal).

This shows that ear syringing, in most cases, could cause more harm than good.


How should you clean your ears instead?

First, it’s important to note that you should not attempt to clean your ears by yourself. In most cases, you will push the wax further down the ear canal and risk perforating your ear drum.

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) advises that all ear wax removal clinics use suction devices or electronic irrigators. In all cases, the clinician is responsible for ensuring there are no contraindications for the ear cleaning procedure.

Although ear syringing at private ear clinics costs around £85, reliable procedures for ear wax removal cost just about the same price. If you are in London or its surrounding towns and would like to book an ear wax removal appointment, you can get a same-day appointment with us.


Welcome to Verified Hearing

We are a private ear clinic in London with a mission to help London hear better. We treat blocked ears, conduct comprehensive hearing tests, clean your ears, and prescribe the best hearing aids. Our central London clinic is situated at 126 Wigmore St, London (W1U 3RY), with state-of-the-art equipment and well-trained staff.

What we do

Ear wax removal

Paediatric audiology

Hearing tests

Home visits

Hearing aids

Opening times

Daytime/after-work appointments: 8am – 8pm daily.

Emergency ear wax removal appointments: 9pm-7am.

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