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Can my GP Practice remove my ear wax?

In September 2020, a government minister confirmed that the NHS would no longer be offering ear wax removal as a core service. This means that you might not be able to get your ear wax removed at your local GP surgery, even if you used to in the past.

"Due to recent changes within the NHS, ear wax removal is no longer undertaken as a standard treatment, by hospitals nor local GP practices"

The Ear Care Clinic at Urban Wellness Hub is staffed by fully qualified Nurses, Morag Ross and Sally Adams. Morag who is leading the Ear Care Clinic is an Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ANP) with over 15 years experience in ear assessments, ear consultations and practical, hands-on, ear irrigation techniques.

Sally has also many years of practice Nurse experience within general practice, including ear assessments and ear irrigation, so you are in very, very safe and experienced hands.

The new Clinic is open on Thursday and Saturday most weeks.

How much does Wax Removal cost?

We take your hearing and ear health seriously, so our wax removal consultation includes a hearing assessment, detailed history, and time for you to ask any questions you might have.

 

Our comprehensive ear consultation, ear assessment and wax removal costs £45 for one or both ears.

If no wax is found in any ear, we only charge our consultation fee of £20 and return back to you £25.

Before the appointment

Prior to your appointment, it is strongly advised to use wax softening drops or olive oil to help soften the wax before removal.

 

Ideally they should be used 7 but up to 10 days beforehand, although a 5 days’ usage is often adequate for some people, because the longer drops are used for, then the more easily and comfortably the wax can be removed during your appointment.

We request you use wax softening oil or water based products a minimum of 5 days before your appointment.

PLEASE NOTE:

  • We may not be able to treat you if you are on a blood thinner dosage of 10mg or more. 

  • Not suitable if recent ear surgery within last 18months

  • Not suitable if ear drum perforation within last 18months

  • If the ear wax hasn't been softened sufficiently to safely remove the wax.

We use modern water irrigation equipment:

  • More gentle, effective and safer than previous ‘syringing’

  • Low-pressure water at body temperature (37°C) flushes out larger quantities of wax in the ear canal

 
More information about ear wax below:
 

What is ear wax?

Ear wax forms an important part of the ears natural defence system because it has certain anti-bacterial agents which help to prevent infections. As it is sticky and moist, it not only helps to moisturise the skin in your ears but also helps to trap foreign bodies and dust. Ear wax slowly works its way out of your ear, making our ears self-cleaning!

When does ear wax become a problem?

A little ear wax is perfectly normal and healthy. However, occasionally ear wax can block your ears.

This usually occurs when it has been pushed in to the ear canal by a person attempting to remove it themselves. Commonly this is done by cotton buds, hairpins, paper clips or other items people use to try and remove wax.

The most recognisable symptoms of excessive ear wax are partial or total hearing loss, itching, fullness, ringing and occasionally pain.

Ear wax should only ever be removed by a fully-trained professional. The ear is an incredibly sensitive organ and the slightest slip can cause long-term damage, so attempting to remove it yourself is not recommended.

All of our NHS nurses are experienced in ear wax removal. A full ear assessment will be done by the nurse prior to removing any wax that may be obstructing your ear canal.

Symptoms of an ear wax build up

 

Deafness is one common symptom that can arise. Here are a list of the symptoms of hearing loss:

 

  1. Ear ache - as it builds up it can press against your ear canal causing pain, yes ear wax can cause pain!

  2. Hearing loss - it can deliver to you hearing loss, especially if you have just gone swimming or had a shower

  3. Itchiness in the ear (can be caused by other things though like dry skin)

  4. Dizziness - a spinning sensation

  5. Tinnitus - surprisingly enough it can give you a sense of buzzing or ringing in the affected ear

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

Bill

Hello again ladies

I am writing to express my gratitude for the ear wax removal treatment you provided on Thursday last.

 

From start to finish the standard of your service has been exemplary. Whereas other providers were talking in terms of several weeks to be seen you went the extra mile to offer an out of hours appointment on the very next day of service.

 

The treatment itself was carried out with professionalism, efficiency and care the latter quality being further evidenced by the follow up check to ensure that all was well. In the event of a recurrence of the problem in future the Hub will be my first port of call and I would have no hesitation in recommending it to anyone else who is seeking similar treatment.

Thank you again, Bill

Anne

Was a wee bit worried about attending as that was the first time I've had my ear wax removed.

But Morag really put my mind at ease as she was very professional, and extremely gentle while I was getting the treatment. I expected some discomfort, but I was lucky and didn't feel anything.

 

Thank you very much.