Unlike the majority of the bodily fluids, earwax is hardly ever the subject of everyday conversation. However, the reality is, this gooey substance is really significant for the body and might tell us a great deal about our overall health. It seems like a disgusting concept in the beginning, but next time you clean the ears you should have a look at what comes out.
Many people do not know that earwax is not just some type of dirty fluid that accumulates in the ears. It is actually produced by the body to protect against germs and dirt getting into the ear canal, which means that this gooey substance actually maintains the ears clean, functional and healthy. The wax is a mixture of long-chain fatty acids, alcohol, and squalene.
No matter how significant this substance is, nobody would like to see it dripping from someone’s ear. So if you see that there is a little bit too much of it inside your ear, please, do get a damp cloth and clean it out. If you decide to use a cotton swab, make sure not to put it inside your ear canal because you might damage your eardrum.
Below are a few examples of various wax colors and what they tell about your health:
1. YELLOW, WET AND STICKY
This is actually the most typical kind of earwax for adults. The sticky, wet texture and consistency help to prevent the ear canals from drying out and from becoming itchy.
2 . GRAY
Gray-colored earwax might seem unusual, but if you find it on the cotton swab, there is really no reason to be concerned. The gray color is usually only the result of the ear’s natural clean-up procedure. However, if the wax is brittle and dry, and your ear canal is itching, it might be an indicator of eczema. If you notice these signs, it’s better to have it seen by a doctor.
3. LIGHT YELLOW
This is the color most typical for children. Kids usually produce much more earwax compared to adults, but this creation gradually lessens as they become older.
4. GOOEY AND DARK
Darker than normal earwax indicates that your body is producing more sweat than usual. People with darker earwax have a higher possibility of producing body odor. Nevertheless, it’s still perfectly healthy.
5. THICK AND DARK
Stress and anxiety can make the body produce considerably more earwax. Heavy perspiration can also result in an increased earwax, which could block the ear canals and lead to temporary hearing impairment. If your earwax is thick and dark, you need to be sure to thoroughly clean your ears on a regular basis in order to avoid any issues. Besides that, this type of earwax might be a good indicator that you need to look for some methods of decreasing the levels of stress and anxiety in your life.
6. WHITE, DRY, AND FLAKY
This type of earwax is a completely normal and healthy. People who generate this type of wax usually produce less body odor compared to people who generate dark earwax.
7. DARK BROWN OR BLACK
Earwax that has black or dark brown color can seem pretty frightening. However, the great news is, there is no reason to be concerned because the dark color might just be correlated with an overproduction of wax (for example, because of stress). Also, it could mean that the earwax has been in the ear for a longer time. The fat in the earwax reacts to oxygen, making the substance darker, so if the wax is in the ear for a long time it is exposed to more oxygen, hence the darker shade.
8. WET AND RUNNY
It is normal for the wax to come out of the ears every now and then – it is just its natural cleaning process. But if wax pours from the ears in large quantities and contains blood or pus, it is a certain indication of a ruptured eardrum. In cases like this, see a doctor immediately.
9. BLOODY WAX
Sometimes an old earwax can appear like a dried blood. But it could also be an indication of a perforated eardrum, which means that if you notice this, you should seek medical attention.
From this article, you can see that earwax can have various colors and the majority of them are perfectly healthy despite their appearance. Next time you clean your ears have a close look at the cotton swab. It might look disgusting, but it is a good way to identify a possible issue and treat it before it becomes really serious!