"Ear wax is extremely important to the health of our ears as it has protective properties against infections," Dr. Deborah Burton, a pediatric ear, nose, and throat surgeon, tells Bustle. Like nose hairs and eyelashes, earwax is there to keep foreign objects out of your body. Earwax blocks dust, bacteria, and other stuff you want nowhere near you from coming in and wreaking havoc. If you didn’t have earwax you would have to deal with way more inflammation, irritation, and infections.
In addition to keeping you healthy, earwax is a good house guest. It cleans up after itself. Whenever you chew or talk, the movement of your jaw causes the wax in your ear to churn and clean out your ear. Pretty cool, huh? And because our ears can clean themselves, there’s really never a reason to stick a q-tip in there. Dr. Burton warns, "Never ever use q-tips to clean the ear. Ever. Even if you use infant sized q-tips. The round end pushes wax onto the eardrum and worsens the problem."
As amazing as earwax is, it too can have its off days, but luckily for you, the appearance and texture of your earwax can let you know if something is wrong with your body, so you can get it treated quickly. Here are 7 things your ear wax can help you figure out about your health.