I am posting to share this happy news. Maybe, some day, some other desperate mother will searched for "impacted ear wax" and find this post.
This is long, so let me summarize: for badly impacted ear wax, here is the winning combo: prescription numbing ear drops fifteen minutes before the procedure, advil a half hour to an hour before the procedure -- plus colace in the ear (not regular, the pedi said it was a form that had to be special ordered) and then syringe with warm water. If our first three health practicioners had known about this winning combo, our dd could have been spared a lot of physical and emotional anguish.
Ok, for those of you who actually have a child with impacted ear wax, my daughter's personal story may interest you. Otherwise, please feel free to skip this.
Our six year old dd had impacted ear wax. It started out mild, then caused hearing loss and considerable pain. We tried and tried to find gentle solutions. She had several trips to the pediatrician and one trip to a pediatric ENT and one trip to see a pediatric nurse practicioner in the ENT's office. Our dd was on antibiotics because she was in so much pain and there was so much ear wax that the pedi could not tell if there was an ear infection. )this pedi usually avoids antibiotics). She was taking ibuprofen and tylenol.
We were not able to make any progress because she was experiencing so much pain that she could not bear to have any drops in her ear. She would sob when we tried to get near it. We tried to get water in her ears by swimming in a heated pool and getting her ears wet in the shower.
Finally, things got desperate - and dd was scheduled to have the ear wax removed under general anesthesia. This was after a horrible ENT visit which I will not go into because I don't want to get mad again.
Fortunately, a friend of mine had a great idea -- so obvious, yet the pedi and the pedi ENT and the NP did not suggest it.
We put numbing drops in her ear, and then added debrox or other wax removal medicine. We had to hold her down against her will for the first numbing drops, but she was immediately relieved from some of her pain and relaxed. We were then able to give debrox without restraining her. Debrox is a gentle ear wax removing product available OTC.
After the first numbing, dd did not have to be restrained at all for any future work until the final irrigation at the pedi's office described below. We numbed, debroxed, swam, in a heated pool howered several times a day.
After three days of this routine, we went to another pediatrician (ours was out of the office) and found only minimal progress had been made. This brilliant pediatrician suggested that he use COLACE which is usually a stool softener, but which may be special ordered in a form suitable for ear wax. I had pre-numbed my daughter's ears in the waiting room and gave her advil one hour before the visit. My dd willingly took the Colace drops in her ears.
Fifteen minutes later, the nurse used warm water to gently irrigate my dd's ear with a syringe. My husband restrained her for one of her ears which hurt more than the other. They were able to completely clean out her ears in just a few short minutes with minimal pain. This ended terrible misery.
So -- remember -- numbing ear drops plus colace in the ear (not regular, the pedi said it was a form that had to be special ordered) and then syringe with warm water. If our first three health practicioners had known about this winning combo, our dd could have been spared a lot of physical and emotional anguish. The one big shock is that my dd is now waking up at every little sound in the morning!
We are so happy about this, and I hope that some day some other child may be spared the procedures my daughter endured.