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Foreign Body, Ear

Ear Foreign Body Overview

Getting an object stuck in the ear is a relatively common problem, especially in toddlers. The vast majority of items are lodged in the ear canal, which is the small channel that ends at the eardrum. Because the ear canal is quite sensitive, you can usually tell if there is something in your ear.

Most cases of foreign bodies in the ear are not serious and can usually wait until the morning or the following day for removal. The object does, however, have to be completely removed quickly and with the least amount of discomfort and danger.

  • Common objects found in ears include food material, beads, toys, and insects. Children often place items in their ears out of curiosity.
  • Although earwax (cerumen) is not technically a foreign body, it does frequently accumulate in the ear canal and can cause discomfort or decreased hearing just like other foreign bodies.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/28/2014
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