DIY is all the rage nowadays and everyone likes a quick easy fix. Got a leaky sink? Just search YouTube for the ideal plumbing tutorial, buy the recommended tools, and get to work! It may take you a little bit longer than it would take a plumber, but there’s no substitute for the satisfaction you feel, right?
At least, until your sink starts leaking again. Because, as it turns out, sometimes a DIY fix is no replacement for the well-sharpened skills of a professional.
Sometimes, that’s hard to admit. Ear candling or earwax candling is a perfect example of a DIY fix that individuals keep going back to. It doesn’t really sound that pleasing, does it? So, exactly what is ear candling, and how is it maybe not the best thing ever? Well, let’s get into that.
What is ear candling?
Have you ever had a plugged-ear kind of feeling? In some cases, your ear will fill with mucus when you’re ill. Too much earwax can also cause this feeling and that can occur for a number of reasons. This can sometimes be very uncomfortable. Your hearing may even temporarily go. It’s no fun!
Some people, as a result, believe that ear candling is just the cheap and novel solution they need. The concept is to put the non-burning end of a special, hollow candle inside of your ear. People believe that the wax and mucus are drawn out by the mix of heat and pressure changes inside your ear.
Healthcare professionals definitely don’t recommend this approach. If you’re looking for evidence that ear candling really works and draws out wax, you won’t uncover any. Almost every single hearing healthcare professional, as a result, will emphatically advocate against using this practice ever. Ear candling also has no effect on sinus pressure.
Just listen to the FDA! (What is the FDA saying about ear candling? In essence, don’t do it!)
The drawbacks of ear candling
Ear candling might feel safe, initially. It’s a really small flame. And you’re utilizing “specialized” equipment. And individuals on the internet claimed it was safe! So, how can ear candling be harmful?
Sadly, there’s no getting around the fact that ear candling can be absolutely dangerous. What are the side effects of ear candling? Ear candling can impact your health in the following negative and possibly painful ways:
- You may accidentally pierce your eardrum: There’s a danger that comes with sticking anything in your ears! Your hearing will suffer substantial damage and discomfort if you end up puncturing your eardrum. If this occurs it’s very likely that you will have to get professional help.
- Your ear can have residual candle wax left behind: The candle wax can get into your ears even if you don’t get burned. Your hearing can become impacted from this, not to mention the discomfort.
- Your ear can be severely burned: Fire is hot, and so is melting candle wax. Your ear is extremely sensitive and considerable burning can occur if the flame or the hot wax gets somewhere it shouldn’t.
- You could severely burn your face: Look, any time you’re holding candles that close to your face, there’s a good possibility you’ll get a burn. Everyone has accidents once in a while. Severe burns on the face aren’t the only hazards, you could also catch your hair on fire or drip hot wax into your eye.
- You can push that earwax even further into your ear: In much the same way that pushing a Q-tip in your ear can pack the earwax into an ever-more-dense obstruction, so too can sticking a specialized candle into your ear. Your earwax issue can be worsened by earwax candling, in other words! This can trigger all kinds of other complications from hearing loss to severe infections.
So, is ear candling recommended by hearing healthcare professionals? Not at all! Not only is ear candling not practical, it’s actually quite dangerous!
A better way to deal with earwax
Ear wax is typically pretty healthy. In normal amounts, it’s beneficial for your ears. It’s only when there’s an excessive amount of earwax (or it isn’t draining correctly) that you begin to have problems. So… if you can’t make use of a burning candle to get rid of earwax, what should you do?
If you have an earwax blockage, the most beneficial thing to do may be talking to a hearing specialist. Typically, they will suggest that you try some at-home solutions, like a saline wash, to loosen the wax allowing it to drip out by itself. But they might also clean out your ear during your visit.
We can remove the wax safely with specialized tools and training.
Generally, you should stay away from techniques such as using cotton swabs and earwax candling. Unless your hearing specialist says differently, it’s a good policy to never put anything smaller than your finger in your ear.
Give your ears some relief
Schedule an appointment with us if you have surplus earwax that’s causing you some distress. We will be capable of helping you remove any stubborn earwax out of your ears and get you back to feeling normal.