Dr. Reign Mwendwa pleads with parents about ear buds

He said that they can cause damage to ones ear

Dr. Reign Mwendwa
Image: Instagram

Dr. Reign Mwendwa, a medical enthusiast went ahead to advice parents not to use earbuds to clean their ears as well as their children's ears. 

"African parents and caregivers, please stop using this thing called earbuds to clean your ears and most importantly your children's ears," he said. 

He explained that what most people refer to as "uchafu" is in fact natural ear wax also known as cerumen.


It is a brown, orange, yellowish, red, or gray substance that is secreted from the ear to protect the skin from bacteria, as well as to lubricate and clean it.

He continued to say that the ear is self-cleaning due to the tiny hair-like structures in the ear canal known as "cilia" that sweeps the wax to the opening which can then be wiped off.

"Along the ear canal are tiny hair-like things called cilia that move in a wave-like motion and sweep cerumen towards the opening of the ear canal."


He asks that one does not insert pens, pen tubes, sticks, ear buds, and any other objects into the ear.

You know how you like to stick anything that fits into your ears to get that pleasant feeling? don't do that.

When this is done one pushes back a lot of germs that were already trapped in the ear wax, which could lead to an ear infection.

"When pushed in the middle ear this can lead to middle ear infections. Infections like Otitis Media can easily progress to Meningitis in children," he explained. 

Dr. Reign added that it could also damage one's ear drum causing perforations which can lead to hearing loss permanently. 

"As a pediatrician, I've seen many traumatic ear injuries due to ear buds especially when kids are playing."  

He advises that one should see an ENT specialist (Ear, Nose, and Throat) when the wax gets hard, for it to be softened by ear drops that have natural oils before using an ear syringe to clean it out.

The process of the wax getting hard is called cerumen impaction and could cause discomfort, and pain and reduce the ability to hear properly. 

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