What to expect during a wax removal appointment

Author thumbnail James Musselwhite  |  Published 17 May 2023  | Updated 16 May 2024  | 5 mins read

An audiologist explaining an ear issue to a patient.

Do your ears feel blocked, or perhaps sounds are feeling a bit muffled? It may be time for you to consider booking ear wax removal.

But what is it, and what can you expect from your appointment? 

Well, let us walk you through a typical ear wax removal appointment at The Hearing Care Partnership.


What is ear wax removal? 

Ear wax is a naturally occurring secretion that everyone has and in most cases, it is something we can leave alone as it will naturally work its way out of the ear. However, there are occasions when this does not happen and the excess ear wax can build up. This is when a professional ear wax removal will be needed. 

Clinicians will typically use one of three methods to remove ear wax, and this is dependent on the level of wax build-up, visual inspection of the ear canal and any pre-existing medical conditions the individual may have. These methods are:

A patient having ear wax removal appointment.

Microsuction – The most commonly used method, microsuction is the safest way to remove a moderate wax build-up. A probe that is attached to a medical grade vacuum is carefully inserted into the ear canal where it will then gently suction the excess ear wax. 

Manual Removal – For small amounts of ear wax that is situated around the entrance of the ear canal, manual wax removal is often the best option. There are a variety of tools which can be used to perform this procedure and they will safely remove the wax. 

Water Irrigation – Successor of the older ‘ear syringing’ method, water irrigation is a safer and gentler method of removal, ideal for larger amounts of ear wax. This method uses low-pressured body temperature water to carefully flush out excess ear wax from the ear canal.

What should I expect during my wax removal appointment?

So now you know what ear wax removal is, let’s find out what you can expect from your appointment with The Hearing Care Partnership from the moment you make your booking


Before your appointment

Your audiologist or wax removal clinician will contact you prior to your appointment to confirm you are still able to attend and provide you with any pre-appointment advice.

Unless instructed otherwise by a healthcare professional, we recommend that you use an olive oil ear spray or drops, such as Earol, daily, for a minimum of 5 days before your appointment. This is to help soften your ear wax so it’s easier for the clinician to remove.

For those with email addresses, you will have been sent a lifestyle questionnaire to fill out, please ensure this is done before your appointment. 


On the day of your ear wax removal

On the day of your appointment, you may be advised to arrive up to ten minutes before the start of your appointment to fill out the lifestyle questionnaire if you haven’t already done so. You will be made aware of this.

You can then relax whilst you wait to be called through to the consulting room.


During your appointment

Before the wax removal can begin, your clinician will go through a few steps at the start of your appointment to determine your level of wax build-up and the most suitable method of removal. They will confirm your medical history and advise you of any risks and considerations before progressing with the appointment.

They will then examine your ear canal with a video otoscope. This will inform your clinician of the level and location of your excess ear wax. If you would like to see inside your ear, just ask your clinician and they will be happy to show you!


You’ll then be asked to sign a consent form, unless signed by email in advance of your appointment, so your clinician can begin the removal using one of the three removal methods; microsuction, manual removal and water irrigation.

Your clinician will then repeat video otoscopy to check that all the excess ear wax has been removed. In some cases, this may not be achievable in one appointment, in which case you will be invited back at a later date. Your clinician can show you images of your ears before and after removal so that you can see the improvement!

Following the successful ear wax removal, your clinician will then conduct a hearing health screening to check the overall health of your hearing. Depending on the results of the screening you may be advised to return for a FREE full hearing assessment with an audiologist.

After an ear wax removal appointment

After your appointment, you should keep your ears dry for 48 hours and avoid putting anything inside them. Your clinician may also recommend the ongoing usage of ear drops.

How to book an ear wax removal?

To book an ear wax removal appointment with The Hearing Care Partnership, you can simply call our Dedicated Patient Support team on 0800 52 00 546 or book an appointment online.