Ear Wax & Blocked Ear FAQs

The ear is a self-cleaning organ.  Wax is produced in the outer third of the ear canal and leaves the ear via migrating skin cells which work their way out from the eardrum at about the same rate as your fingernails grow.  For a small percentage of the population however, wax does not remove itself naturally.  This wax can then become impacted in the ear canal leading to symptoms.

Our qualified registered nurses use dry and effective micro suction to gently remove ear wax under direct observation.

The standard appointment fee for ear wax removal with Earworx is $150.

We offer a concession appointment fee for Pensioners, Veterans, Government Health Care Card Holders, Children, and Full-Time Students for $115.

If no ear wax is found during your appointment, we offer a reduced rate of $75 for the consultation (or $60 for concession).

If further follow up appointments are required after additional softening (within 4 weeks of initial appointment), all follow up appointments will be charged at a rate of $60 for standard fee paying patients (or $30 for concession).

Please note we are a provider for St Lukes Health and Health Care Insurance (HCI).

We also see children aged 4 years or older. A discussion with Earworx staff is recommended prior to booking. For safety reasons children need to be able to follow direction and keep reasonably still.

For more information, visit our Earworx Pricing page here and our  terms and conditions here.

Signs of impacted wax can include (but are not limited to):

  • Feeling of fullness
  • Hearing loss
  • Tinnitus­­­
  • Itching
  • Pain
  • Discharge
  • Odour
  • Cough

The procedure involves the use of small instruments and gentle suction to remove wax blockages.  Your nurse uses binocular glasses fitted with a bright light to maintain direct vision into the ear at all times.­­­ For more information about the procedure, click here.

No, there is no water involved in the micro-suction and curettage procedure.  This is a dry technique.

Yes. Micro-suction is the same gentle, effective and dry technique used by ENT specialists across Australia.

Your qualified registered nurse has undertaken a Nationally Accredited Earworx Course in Aural Care, and has completed an extensive practical placement in order to work safely within the ear canal and around the eardrum. This involves approximately 20 hours of study and a 1-week clinical placement. Read more About Us here.

You may be more at risk of wax build up if you:

  • Use cotton buds or other objects in your ear
  • Wear hearing aids
  • Regularly use ‘ear bud’ headphones
  • Have narrow, bendy or hairy ear canals
  • Suffer skin conditions such as psoriasis or dermatitis
  • Work in dusty environments
  • Are stressed
  • Overproduce earwax

This fee is partly rebatable through St Lukes Health (provider number A4001013) and Health Care Insurance depending on your level of cover.  Please contact St Lukes or Health Care Insurance directly to ascertain the amount of your health care fund rebate. The fee is not rebatable through medicare.

To ensure the safety of our staff cash is not held or accepted on site. We accept payment on the day of the appointment via card, and can also facilitate payment over the phone if required. Your credit card payment is transmitted securely and processed in real time, and your credit card details are not retained by us.

The procedure is suitable for people with:

  • An overproduction of earwax
  • Perforated ear drums
  • Problems in the ear canal where syringing is unsuitable
  • Hearing aids
  • Previous ear surgery – you may require a referral back to your ENT specialist
  • Narrow ear canals
  • Curvy ear canals
  • Hairy ear canals
  • Skin conditions like dermatitis or psoriasis
  • Diabetes

Preventing symptoms related to wax build up is key to maintaining good ear health. A visit to Earworx once a year can assist in this process.

We see children down to the age of 4 years. A discussion with Earworx staff is recommended prior to booking. For safety reasons children need to be able to follow direction and keep reasonably still. Please phone 1800 327 967

In Australia, the general position is that a person under 18 years of age is legally regarded as a minor.

Whilst NSW and SA legislation recognises a child’s ability to consent to medical treatment earlier it is the Earworx policy that any teenager under 18 years must be accompanied by a parent or authorised carer who can provide parental consent for treatment. This parent/authorised carer will be required to complete the questionnaire and consent form, and remain with the child throughout the procedure.

For safety reasons, Earworx does not treat children under four years old and those with complex ear histories. We also do not treat anyone who had undergone mastoid surgery without endorsement via a letter from your ENT or GP. If you are unsure whether you’re eligible for treatment, give our friendly team a call to discuss.

Whilst your GP or audiologist may refer you to us, no referral is necessary.

Yes, but if you have an urgent problem we will do our best to see you the same day.

No. Some people may experience mild discomfort due to the ‘slurpy’ noise of the suction and during removal of very impacted wax.  Occasionally mild dizziness may be experienced.  If this occurs the nurse will stop the suction to allow the dizziness to settle.

Approximately 15-30 minutes depending on how much wax is in the ear. If wax is very dry and impacted, softening may be necessary prior to removal to avoid trauma to the ear canal. A complimentary return visit is provided following a week if required.

It is helpful to use softening drops two days prior to your appointment to assist with removal unless you have a hole in the eardrum or grommets.

Earworx recommends the use of plain olive oil for this purpose, or Ear Clear™ from your local chemist.

Click here to learn more about commercial softening products.

Click here to learn more about softening your ear wax before your appointment

For visits to nursing homes or for group bookings please contact your nearest Earworx clinic directly (see clinic locations tab). Home visits are charged at a flat rate of $220 per session in Tasmania and Regional Australia and $240 per session in Mainland Capital Cities.

If you have hearing aids it is a good idea to have your ears checked for wax build up every 3-6 months.

Avoid using anything in the ear (e.g. cotton buds, hairpins) as this may push wax further down the canal, worsening symptoms. You may also try chemist softeners, to assist the self-cleaning mechanism of the ear to remove wax. Once a month or fortnight is all that is necessary.

Did you know that you can still attend Earworx if you have a hole in the ear drum (perforation) or grommets? Our dry technique is perfectly suited to those with ‘non-intact’ eardrums and where wax removal via water is unable to be performed.

However, it is not suitable to use softening products, including prior to your Earworx appointment – please skip this step.

If you have any questions please call 1800 327 967 to speak with our friendly call centre staff or we can arrange for one of our highly trained Registered Nurses to call and discuss this with you.

Whilst we would love to assist at Earworx with TCAs, unfortunately, we are unable to sign up for Team Care Arrangement as Registered Nurses currently do not have access to the MBS and are not eligible to provide services under Team Care Arrangements.

We are lobbying hard to see change to this funding model for nurses working independently and within their scope.

Unfortunately, the DVA currently does not cover registered nurses as they do not have a Medicare Provider Number. DVA patients are eligible for a concession rate for wax removal services if they present their GOLD or WHITE DVA card at the time of their appointment.