We’ve all been there: clogged ears and a harsh headache. If you are struggling with ear issues, you might think excess earwax is causing the problem. While your ear has its system of regulating wax buildup, sometimes it needs a little help. If you happen to have a sauna, the question of whether or not the heat and humidity will melt your earwax is common.
Using a sauna typically won’t melt earwax even though it can get hot enough to melt some kinds of wax. This is because your body is constantly trying to maintain your body temperature (also called homeostasis) by cooling your skin.
But don’t count the sauna out just yet. Often, the feeling of clogged ears isn’t just due to over-packed earwax. In fact, most of the time, it comes with nasal congestion and other respiratory ailments. Also, even though it usually won’t melt your earwax, it will affect you. Let’s discover more about saunas and earwax.
What a Sauna Does to Your Earwax
When it comes time for a sauna session, what happens to the wax in your ears? Earwax, known as cerumen, is an essential part of your ear’s operation. In a natural process of moving your jaw, the wax moves out of your ear and flakes off. Fresh cerumen then replaces it.
But much like the wax of a candle, there is a limit to its stability. If you were to heat it outside the ear, it would easily melt above, say 110°F. But this does not happen in your ears. When you are in the sauna, you start to sweat. This is your body’s natural response to help your body regulate your core temperature. Even more external parts of your body, like your ears, benefit from this response.
But this is what we want to get out of a sauna. Sweating and sauna use have plenty of noted health benefits. But when it comes to earwax, you won’t see any huge effect. While you won’t melt any away, you will undoubtedly help soften it. In this way, it can help remove extra earwax but doesn’t necessarily melt it.
Other Health Conditions Helped by Sauna Use
While you can’t melt away your earwax problems, the source of the issue may be less of a challenge. You see, often we feel that our ears are full of wax when we are just congested. This is due to sets of sinuses, which are open spaces in your skull. If respiratory issues plague you, your sinuses have certainly been congested at some point. It is a reasonably common issue.
But when this happens, it might feel like your ears are full. Excessive earwax is not the cause. Luckily, here is where saunas come in. They have long been used to combat respiratory problems and can be the perfect way to unclog your packed sinuses as well as help with things like sunburns which we’ve talked more about before.
The steam common in most saunas are great as it can help unclog your congested sinuses. If all goes well, it could feel like the excessive pressure in your ears is gone. Another interesting issue that could benefit from a sauna session is tinnitus. If you aren’t familiar with this particular ailment, it can be quite a nuisance.
Tinnitus may have many sources, but it has one thing in common: an annoying ring. Luckily, scientists may have found a clever treatment. Improper blood pressure in the middle ear is often the cause of tinnitus. You can use a sauna to help regulate blood pressure problems. This means that regular sauna sessions can even help with this ear issue.
What Are the Other Health Benefits of Using a Sauna?
We’ve already touched on one of the most famous benefits, blood pressure regulation, but there are some other stunning health benefits of saunas, in fact, many have argued that it’s a great source of Vitamin D. One that can certainly turn some heads is its effect on cardiovascular health.
In fact, for the very same reason, it helps with blood pressure it helps with your heart. The two are tied together. Basically, your blood pumps harder when you are in the sauna sweating. Much like taking a jog or playing a sport, this is great for the health of your heart. Some report some amazing results.
A Finland study on Harvard’s website found men who used a sauna more often lived longer. The sauna is also great if you want to help relieve muscle tension. If you are suffering from back problems or knots, a session in a sauna can really help alleviate pain. It can also be a great stress reliever.
While you might not melt your earwax in your sauna, you’ll undoubtedly loosen it up. In this way, it can help get rid of earwax, but be careful. It is also often the case that ear congestion problems find their source in other issues with your sinuses.
But saunas can help with respiratory issues quite well. They can also help with other ear issues like tinnitus. Overall, sauna use comes with a whole host of great health benefits. A sauna can be an excellent option in your home treatment toolbox from blood pressure to stress relief.