08 July 2009

Should you clean your child's ear?

We were at the Paed again yesterday and this time, Werney has complaint about minor ear discomfort and Anney has developed some kind of rash. Anney's fever has subsided but now it is the rash on her body and nappy area (will blog about this later).

Our Paed told us that he could see quite a fair bit of ear wax inside Werney's ears and the ear wax is blocking her ear drum. He told us he will try to remove the ear wax, provided Werney could sits very still as the Paed needs to use a sharp ear forceps to remove the ear wax.

The forcep look like this....

Of course, my little girl was terrified and I have to try to distract Werney by asking her to look at my face and counting the number of moles on my face and also playing the statute game with both her hands touching her own knees to stop her from moving her hands and arms.

The Paed was quite skilled and all this was done within 5 minutes and Werney doesn't feel any pains. I counted and there are about 8 pieces of ear wax measuring 3-5 mm each. Sorry for being so grossed or if you just had your meal!

Now, Werney could hears us clearly and no wonder, she has been talking so loud at this while! Anyway, our Paed told us her ear drum is okay and there is no sign of infection. The Paed said it could be just the ear wax causing the discomfort and we were told not to use any metal ear cleaner or cotton bud to clean the inside part of the ear (Po Po who was with us yesterday strongly disagree with that idea! According to her, we have to remove the ear wax or otherwise, it will grows more and more.)

Although cleanliness is important for good health, parents should never clean their child's ear canals. According to our Paed, cleaning the ear canals will increases the chance of developing ear infection or inflammation.

Although cotton buds are the most common, bobby pins, toothpicks, and many other objects are also used to remove wax. These misguided attempts at cleanliness scratch the thin lining of the ear canal and could even cause the ear wax to go further inside the ear canal. Nothing, not even cotton buds should be inserted into a child's ear canal. If there is really a need to remove the ear wax, this should only be done by a health care professional lol.

For daily cleaning, our Paed advises us to remove what we can see only at the outside of the ear canal using a moist face cloth!


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