Olive oil is a truly amazing gift of nature. It is well-known for its culinary uses in many parts of the world, especially the Mediterranean region.
Raw olive oil or extra-virgin olive oil is obtained by cold-pressing ripe olives. This golden yellow oil boosts healthful properties. Research indicates that consuming olive oil can lower the risk of cancer and cardiac problems.
But one of the lesser known uses of olive oil is associated with our ears. Olive oil has traditionally been a home remedy for a wide range of ear-related problems.
Olive oil is commonly used for ear wax removal and to treat ear infections. But is it really effective and fully safe? Read on as we answer common questions about the olive oil ear drop treatment and whether it really treats blocked ears and how to use it for ear infections and wax removal.
Olive Oil Ear Drops: How Do They Work?
Olive oil is liquid fat. The fat, vitamin and antioxidant-rich composition of olive oil makes it an ideal natural moisturiser for dry to normal skin.
Most of the protective health properties of olive oil can be attributed to its friendly fat content. It is precisely these plant-derived fats that make this oil an ideal choice for ear wax removal.
Lukewarm olive oil works by breaking up ear wax that has hardened in the ear canal, moisturising inner skin and minimising irritation. The oil works softens the earwax plugs, dislodging them from the ear canal in the process.
Olive oil also contains polyphenols which give the oil its antimicrobial properties. Because olive oil may help counter germs that cause viral and bacterial diseases, it is often used as a remedy for ear infections.
Olive Oil in Ear: Does it Work?
Olive Oil for Ear Wax Removal
As with most traditional remedies, researchers have not yet fully explored the benefits of using olive oil for ear problems. While some studies have supported using olive oil for ear wax removal, more research is needed to confirm the benefits of olive oil for blocked ears.
A 2013 study found that applying olive oil eardrops every night increased the ear wax build-up instead of dislodging it.
However, the study also found that the wax was easier to remove when the participants sprayed some olive oil into their ear before visiting their doctor for an irrigation procedure.
The study also confirmed that wet irrigation (with olive oil) before ear-related procedures was preferable to dry irrigation.
A 2010 study also confirmed that applying olive oil ear drops regularly was better than not treating ear wax blockages at all.
Olive Oil for Ear Infection
Olive oil has also been used as a natural remedy for ear infections. It is said to alleviate the pain and irritation caused by an ear infection.
While olive oil has anti-bacterial properties, it is not very clear whether it eliminates the type of bacteria that causes ear infections.
A 2003 study exploring the effects of herbal ear drops containing a combination of olive oil with soothing herbs such as lavender and calendula found that the ear drops were effective in offering comfort to children during ear infections.
How to Apply Olive Oil in Ear?
Follow these steps to apply olive oil ear drops in your ear using a dropper or a cotton swab. Make sure you do not insert the swab or any other item in your ear:
- Lie down on your side with your ear facing up
- Pull the external part of your ear out and up to access your ear canal
- Squeeze 2-3 drops of olive oil into the blocked/infected ear
- Softly rub the skin at the front of your ear canal to help the oil get absorbed
- Stay put on your side for a further 5 to 10 minutes
- Wipe away any remaining oil that drips onto your skin once you sit up
- Repeat in the other ear (if required)
Observe any changes that may arise. If the condition of your ear does not improve, contact a doctor to schedule an appointment.
- *Using Olive Oil for Ear Wax - Repeat this procedure once a day for one to two weeks.
- *Using Olive Oil for Ear Infection - Repeat this treatment twice a day for two to three days.
*If your symptoms are not improving or you have developed a fever, call a doctor immediately.
Is Olive Oil Safe?
Olive oil ear drops are generally safe - but there are some guidelines you need to follow.
Do not put olive oil in your ears if you have a ruptured ear drum. You must also never insert a cotton swab or any other object in your ear to remove ear wax.
Swabs can actually push the wax deeper and cause your ears to become infected. They can also cause damage to delicate parts of the ear, especially your ear drum.
A Word on Picking the Right Kind of Olive Oil
It is vital to pick the finest quality of olive oil if you are using it for medicinal or cosmetic purposes. When choosing your product, make sure you go for premium extra-virgin olive oil.
Extra virgin olive oil is potent, natural and unprocessed. This can increase its effectivity. It is also devoid of any artificial preservatives and additives that can irritate the ear canal. You can buy extra-virgin olive oil here.
About Nature’s Blends
At Nature’s Blends, we are passionate about bringing you the finest nature has to offer. That is why we work hard to make sure that every organic product we deliver to your doorstep is of topmost quality and purity.Each bottle of our extra-virgin olive oil is naturally sourced and prepared for delivery with love and care. Our olive oil 100% natural, raw and unprocessed. We add no artificial preservatives to it.