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Are Q-tips really dangerous?

 
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James Avery View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote James Avery Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 3:31pm
Originally posted by Jewelsnyc Jewelsnyc wrote:

Originally posted by Random Thoughts Random Thoughts wrote:

The cotton came off inside of my moms ear one time. The way she described it getting removed at the hospital sounded so painful. 
Ouch! You have to be real careful with q-tips. I usually wet and re-twirl mine before I insert it in my ear.


this is what i do. i dip the tip in peroxide then proceed to clean.
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Jewelsnyc View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Jewelsnyc Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 3:46pm
Originally posted by James Avery James Avery wrote:

Originally posted by Jewelsnyc Jewelsnyc wrote:

Originally posted by Random Thoughts Random Thoughts wrote:

The cotton came off inside of my moms ear one time. The way she described it getting removed at the hospital sounded so painful. 
Ouch! You have to be real careful with q-tips. I usually wet and re-twirl mine before I insert it in my ear.


this is what i do. i dip the tip in peroxide then proceed to clean.
That's cuz we fam James...Big smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote BBpants Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 3:50pm
These q-tip stories are scaring the f**k out of me 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote kkscottdale Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 4:32pm
I always wet the tip. Total eargasm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Midna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 7:31pm
Originally posted by nycdiva357 nycdiva357 wrote:

my ear dr. told me ur not supposed to put qtips in your ear..they are for your outer ear.
and over 60% of his patients come to him b/c of qtip mishaps.

why do i have an ear doctor...lol
b/c of a qtip mishap.

i had put a qtip in my ear... and i got a chill... so twitched.. causing my shoulder to hit the qtip on my ear drum..lol
it hurt for a minute...i saw some blood. but what really freaked me out was that i heard everything in echos..lol

I was so scared i was going deaf.. i went to the doctor.
who told me give my drum some time to heal.




O___O E-echoes?!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote foxyroy19 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 9:18pm
scary

Edited by foxyroy19 - Jan 04 2013 at 9:19pm
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Derri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Derri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 9:27pm
omg my body ran cold from nyc's story. 
Dear god! 
I knew they were for the outer ear. I hate cleaning my ear!!!!! I be so scared!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote nycdiva357 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 9:38pm
yeah i heard in echos for a week.. lol
but the worst part of the story was when I went to the ear dr. (the way mom's insurance worked.. was I had to see an audiologist before i got to see the specialist) minutes later.

so i see the audiologist.. and I'm by myself.. after he checks me up he goes
"yup i see the damage...this could be permanent and you may continue to lose your hearing or you can stay like you are"  (besides echoes...everything sounded really low.. like swimmears ear)

i went into the waiting room and started bawling.. I called my mommy
we lived around the corner from the medical center.. and she had to come calm me down.

when i saw the specialist.. it was him who told me- ill be ok.. and to cut it out w/ the qtips etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote nycdiva357 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 9:40pm
 just so yall know im not alone...lmao

oh and the tiniest bottle of ear drops that they gave me was 100 dollars.. so ridiculous..lol

Family Webicine

with Rod Moser, PA, PhD

Stories from behind the examining room door, as told by Rod Moser, PA, a primary care physician assistant with more than 35 years of clinical experience.

Important:

... Expand

Monday, November 13, 2006

Q-Tips – Weapons of Ear Destruction?

A week does not pass where I have the opportunity to chastise yet another injured Q-tip user on the Ear Disorders Board or in my own clinic. I had two today, including one admitted bobby-pin user. I have a well-deserved reputation of being a venomous and unsympathetic opponent of using Q-tips in the ear, so I thought this topic deserved another blog post.

Now, I use the term Q-tip, a brand name and registered trademark of the Chesebrough-Pond/Unilever Company, and makers of Vaseline and other slick products, in the generic sense. Since Q-tips are a lot easier to say than “cotton-tipped applicators”, I will use this term. There are certainly other manufacturers of cotton-tipped applicators out there, but none with eighty years of manufacturing experience.

I always thought that the Q of Q-tip meant “quick” since others have chosen to bastardize this fine brand name in this fashion. I was surprised to discover that the Q actually means “quality”. Strangely enough, I also discovered that Q-tips used to be called Baby Gays; a name given to this product by its Polish inventor (I’m not going there) that would not be considered politically-correct marketing today.

Let me say up front to ward off the lawyers of this fine company, that it is not the Q-tips that are the problem. It is the USERS of the Q-tips that I wish to address. Q-tips do not harm people; people harm people.

I wish that I had a box of Q-tips to check my facts, but I have been told that the company has a warning on the box not to use them INSIDE the ear. That is a very good and responsible statement. Unfortunately, few people read the box or heed this warning.

I found the following statement on their Web site:

“Q-Tips cotton swabs have more cotton at the tip* than any other swab, making them the safest, softest and gentlest tool you can use for family care. They also provide the ultimate precision, making them the perfect tool for uses outside your ear.” (I added the italics to the word, “outside”).

Human beings have been digging around in their ears since the Dawn of Time. I bet even selective-hearing Adam was cleaning out his ears during God’s “Don’t eat the apples” lecture. Museums have examples of ivory and gold ear spoons that date back thousands of years. When I was visiting Japan a few decades ago, a cute little Japanese girl handed me a sample of a modern, disposable ear spoon. That’s what the world needs: another product that can cause potential harm.

We can blame some of this stuff on our parents and our parent’s parents and so on. They were the ones that started the rumor that earwax was bad stuff that had to be removed, like toe jam or a booger hanging out of your nose. They could not have been more wrong.

While excess, hard, or obstructive earwax can be problematic, most earwax (cerumen) is infinitely more beneficial. It is a normal, protective coating for the sensitive skin of the ear canal. A canal coated with ear wax will repel water and help prevent external ear infections. When you dig it out like some demented gold miner, you leave your ear very vulnerable.

Since we do not have the ability to look inside our own ears at the present time (you can buy a video otoscope for under a thousand dollars if you want), most Q-tip users blindly probe around looking for yellow, often getting red instead. Many will look at their wax-stained swab with pride and admiration of a job well done. Eventually, they will go too far and injure or rupture their eardrums. If it wasn’t for pain and blood, I suspect that some people would excavate around until they pulled out little bones or brain tissue. Perhaps, many have already done that.

Q-tips are not unlike the plungers used to load cannon. They can pack softer wax deeply in the ear canal against the eardrum. By creating a formidable plug and preventing the eardrum from moving normally, it is quite easy to cause some significant hearing loss. Water can also be trapped behind these self-created wax dams and entertain you by constant sloshing around. When this happens, the ear will need to be lavaged — washed out by a gentle stream of warm water. Or, you will need to see your medical provider, someone that CAN look inside your ear and remove the impaction professionally.

Chronic Q-tip use creates dryness in the sensitive ear canal. Dry skin itches. People with itchy ears use Q-tips (and other found objects) to scratch them. The scratching causes itching. Do you see the cycle here? Eventually, the damaged skin will break down and crack, allowing opportunistic bacteria or yucky fungus to invade. Congratulations. You have caused otitis externa, also known as Swimmer’s Ear.

Speaking of swimmers, chronic water exposure can wash out all of the protective wax, too, causing the water to remain in the ear canal. In order to remove the water, people will use Q-tips, or put drops of drying alcohol in the ear canal, often making the matters worse. I recently tested a new product called DryEar, a portable/rechargeable ear dryer. I loved it. It blows a gentle stream of warm air into the ear canal to dry out that trapped water.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with Q-tips; a fine, well-made product. They have hundreds of clever uses. As long as you don’t put them INSIDE your ears, they are a safe product. In the hands of idiots, they are true Weapons of Ear Destruction.

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Derri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Derri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 04 2013 at 9:44pm
so how do you clean your ears now, nyc?
Glad you didn't lose your hearing!


Edited by Derri - Jan 04 2013 at 9:46pm
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