The ear, nose and throat areas are targeted by numerous viruses and bacteria. Resulting health problems are one of the main causes for babies and young children visiting their paediatrician. Ear hygiene should be taught at the youngest age, just like good nasal or oral hygiene.
Children's ear canals are narrower than adults, and are not fully grown until the age of around seven years.
Impurities therefore accumulate more quickly in children's ears and can lead to earwax plugs. The narrower the canal, the greater the risk: including the risk of extreme external otitis in babies, in particular those who go swimming.
The earwax of babies and young children is wet. Adult earwax is denser and drier. If a cotton bud is misused, adults can push the wax to the back of the ear.
Due to the narrowness of the canal, mechanical extraction by an ear specialist is more difficult and dangerous in young patients.
Comparison of the anatomy of child and adult’s auditory canal
Poor ear hygiene can lead to the following difficulties for babies and young children: