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The practice and perceived outcome of self-ear cleaning is a common practice among university student despite associated complications. It constitutes a significant proportion of health problems in many settings and its prevalence varies among undergraduate nursing student of the university of Nigeria Enugu campus. This study aimed at determining the prevalence, sociodemographic features, clinical presentation, associated complications and management of self ear cleaning among undergraduate nursing student on the university of Nigeria Enugu campus. The study adopt the survey research design for the study. The method of data collection was the primary method with the aid of the semi-structured questionnaire. The method of data analysis was the percentage and graphical method. The study conclude that Self ear cleaning is a common ear habit among undergraduate student. A Prevalence of self ear cleaning was on the high side as recorded in this study. Reasons are ignorant, social as well ear diseases including allergy.



  • Background of the study

Self-cleaning of the external auditory canal with different types of objects is a common practice worldwide (Lee LM, Govindaraju R Et al 2015). Major reasons for self-ear cleaning were to remove ear wax inform of personal hygiene and because earwax was considered as a dirt from the earOther reasons for self-ear cleaning includes feeling of ear discomfort, earache, hearing impairment and itching. There are various object used for self-ear cleaning and these were cotton bud, key, soapy water, feathers, stick, Biro cover, finger and so on (Afolabi AO, 2015).There is paucity of literature on self ear cleaning in low income country. The human ear consists of three parts the outer ear, middle ear and inner ear. The ear canal of the outer ear is separated from the air-filled tympanic cavity of the middle ear by the eardrum. The middle ear contains the three small bones the icicles involved in the transmission of sound, and is connected to the throat at the nasopharynx, via the pharyngeal opening of the Eustachian tube. The inner ear contains the otolith organs the utricle and saccule and the semicircular canals belonging to the vestibular system, as well as the cochlea of the auditory system (Gray and Standring 2018). Ears are not only help us to hear, they also show an vital character in the maintenance of balance (Adoga and Nimkur 2013). Ear care is the part of social cleanliness (Alwassel, Alateeq et al. 2018). Ears may not demand much care but their proper and adequate care is essential to protect their daily optimal functions. using simple steps such as wiping the external ears with a clean washing cloth or with tissue and wheneveraccumulation of cerumen occurs, the removal should be handled by a clinician (Amutta, Yunusa et al. 2013). Care of the ears may not matter to like caring for the teeth for example- we don’t have to brush the ear daily like we do teeth (Alharbi, M. M., et al.2019). Commonly, ear prepared to hygienic ear wax measured as dirt from the EAC. Still, wax resulted from collective secretions of the ceruminous and sebaceous glands and desquamated epithelium from the tympanic casing and skin coating the outer aural channel form the ear wax (Gyamfi, C. K. R., et al.2016). Hearing capacity is essential to knowing and communicating with the world around us. Hearing loss is the most common sensory disability in people, affecting newborns, adolescents, adults and elderly people (Hobson, J, et al.2018). Influenza virus increases middle ear infection with pneumococcal disease. F or adolescents the degree of nasal colonization is correlated with otitis media incidence (Olajide, T. G., et al. (2018). Self-medication remains a major public health issue throughout the world (Ridley and Channing 2008). Most occurrences of the illness are treated by self-medication in economically poor communities. According to the WHO self-medication is defined as the choice and usage of medications by persons to treat self-recognized disease or symptoms (Olajide, Aremu et al. 2018). Loud sound exposure for any length of time causes sensory cells of the ear to tire. The effect is acute hearing loss (a ringing sound in the ear) or tinnitus. A person attending a noisy concert may have a dull hearing or tinnitus experience. It can cause permanent damage if the exposure is particularly loud, frequent orprolonged. The hearing improves with the regeneration of the sensory cells (Organization 2015). The complications of self-ear cleaning were ear trauma, traumatic tympanic membrane perforation, impacted object, inflammation, otitis external from bacterial and fungal infection. Other complications includes interferes with the self-cleansing function of the external auditory canal which may lead to accumulation and subsequently earwax impaction (Adegbiji, WA. et al 2014).


Ear not only the part of the hearing body, but they also play a key role in maintaining the body’s balance that is important to enable the individual to practice their daily activities. There is still a lack of knowledge and understanding of best practices for human ear treatment. Human activities and practices that are not hygienic can affect both human hearing and body balance, Such as substances that might enter the tympanic membrane, allergic reactions, bacterial and fungal infections, noisy noises from surroundings and the use of harmful instruments To wash the ear. (Alateeq, Alwassel,et al. 2017).

in developing countries like Nigeria, ear diseases are considered a serious public health problem with the potential to influence the psychological and social health of children and their families. Among ear diseases, auricle infections are one of the most common infective sicknesses in children. Many studies have shown that most children (around 80%) will experience at least one period of OM at three years and 40% will have at least six recurrences before the age of seven.(Kohli, Kadirvelu et al. 2016).

Due to lack of ear care many diseases lead to complication and illness. It is important to educate the children to improve their ear care through health education session to save the life of human to increase the excellence of life and decrease mortality rate. When it preformed correctly and at appropriate times, it stop the spread of bacterial infection help to prevent from many illness, There study seek to investigate Practices And Perceived Outcome Of Self Ear Cleaning Among Undergraduate Nursing Students .


The study has one main objective which is divided into general and specific objective, the general objective is to examine the practices and perceived outcome of self ear cleaning among undergraduate nursing student of the university of Nigeria Enugu campus the specific objectives are;

  1. To determine the circumstances under which the students engage in self-ear cleaning
  2. To assess how often the nursing students engage in self-ear cleaning
  • To identify the objects the students use for self-ear cleaning
  1. To ascertain how the nursing students feel after engaging in self-ear cleaning

The following research questions were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

  1. Are there circumstances under which the students engage in self-ear cleaning?
  2. Do nursing students engage in self-ear cleaning?
  • Are they specific objects the students use for self-ear cleaning?
  1. Does self-ear cleaning enhance the feeling of cleanliness among nursing student?

The following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

H0:Nursing student does not engage in self-ear cleaning

H1:Nursing student does engage in self-ear cleaning

H0:There are no circumstances under which the students engage in self-ear cleaning

H2:There are circumstances under which the students engage in self-ear cleaning


It is believed that at the completion of the study, the findings will be of great importance to the nursing profession as the study seek to explore the dangers of the practice and perceived outcome of self-ear cleaning among undergraduate nursing students of the University of Nigeria, the study will also be of importance to researchers who intend to embark on a study in a similar topic as the findings of the study will serve as a reference point to further studies. Finally, the study will be of importance to student, teachers, lecturers, nursing student, medical profession and the general public as the study will add to the pool of existing literature and also contribute to knowledge on the subject matter


The scope of the study covers the practice and perceived outcome of self-ear cleaning among undergraduate nursing students of the university of Nigeria Enugu campus, but in the course of the study, there are some factors that limit the scope of the study;

AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study

TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

FINANCE: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.



The ear has external, middle, and inner portions. The outer ear is called the pinna and is made of ridged cartilage covered by skin

Self-ear cleaning

Self‑ear‑cleaning, the insertion of objects into one’s own ears purportedly to clean them.


Nursing is a profession within the health care sector focused on the care of individuals, families, and communities so they may attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and quality of life


This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study its based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.  Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.