Earwax is the yellow-brown substance that is produced in the ears of all mammals. So we humans also have earwax. It tastes bitter in the mouth. It is certain glands in the ear canal that produce the earwax. It keeps the skin in the ear canal moist. This is important, for example, to get dust and dirt out of the ear canal. The earwax fights bacteria and makes it harder for insects to crawl into the ear canal.

Most people in Europe and Africa have moist, sticky earwax. However, some people also have dry earwax, which is much whiter. If someone washes very often or swims especially often, there may be too little earwax in the ear. From this one gets a severe earache.

However, earwax does not always stay in the ear canal. The skin itself can transport earwax out of the ear canal. It can then be wiped off on the outside. Many people try to get the earwax out with cotton swabs. However, doctors strongly advise against this. With cotton swabs, you only get a small amount out and stuff most of the earwax deeper into the ear canal. On the eardrum it hurts then.

That the ear canal is clogged, one notices by pain or by the fact that one hears worse. Then you should see a doctor. If the earwax forms a solid plug, he takes it out with fine forceps. In other cases, the doctor's assistant puts a special liquid into the ear canal. This softens the earwax. Then she can rinse the ear canal with normal water.

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