Measuring stress levels has never been this easier. Now it takes only drawing wax from your ear canal, and looking for levels of stress hormone, cortisol, in it, suggests a new study.
A report by BBC gives details of the study, sourcing from its lead author Dr Andres Herane-Vives, a psychiatrist at University College London Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience.
The oily secretions in the ear canal could open the door to diagnosing psychiatric conditions including depression, according to Dr Andres Herane-Vives.
Alongside, a new kind of swab, developed by him, will stop damage to the eardrum.
Known as " fight or flight" hormone, Cortisol triggers signals to the brain in the face of stress, influencing everything from immune system to digestion to sleep.
But its role in disorders including anxiety and depression is not fully understood, BBC report said.
Though early, the finding could help establish an "objective biological measure" for psychiatric conditions, because mental health diagnosis today is greatly subjective.