Everyone loves an easy fix, particularly when the solution is also a DIY fix. Sink Leaking? Just search YouTube for the suitable plumbing tutorial, go get the suggested tools, and get to work! A plumber would probably be a little more efficient but then you wouldn’t get that sense of self-satisfaction that comes with doing it on your own.
But that feeling only continues until your sink starts to leak again. Because, as it turns out, sometimes a DIY fix is no substitute for the well-honed skills of a professional.
It’s not always easy to admit that this is the situation. Ear candling or earwax candling is a perfect example of a DIY fix that individuals keep coming back to. It doesn’t really sound very pleasing, does it? So, just 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 sort of feeling? Sometimes, your ear will fill with mucus when you’re sick. In other cases, it might occur because you have too much earwax in your ears (and too much earwax can have a variety of causes). This can sometimes be very uncomfortable. Your hearing may even temporarily go. It sort of stinks!
Some people, as a result, think that ear candling is just the inexpensive and novel solution they need. The idea is that a special hollow candle is put in your ear (non-burning end). Somehow, the combination of heat and the hollow style of the candle alters the air pressure inside of your ear canal, drawing the earwax or mucus out.
It should be immediately noted that ear candling isn’t recommended by healthcare professionals. Do ear candles really pull wax out? No. There’s positively no proof that ear candling works (particularly not in the way that it’s supposed to work). Essentially, most hearing and healthcare professionals will strongly recommend against ever utilizing this technique. (Does ear candling help with sinus pressure? Also no.)
Just listen to the FDA! (What is the FDA saying about ear candling? Essentially, don’t do it!)
What are the drawbacks of ear candling?
Initially, ear candling might feel perfectly safe. It’s not like it’s a huge flame. And the “equipment” is specialized. And there are plenty of people online who maintain that it’s completely safe. So how could it be possible for ear candling to be harmful?
Unfortunately, there’s no getting around the fact that ear candling can be absolutely hazardous. What are the negative effects of ear candling? Here are just a few of the (potentially painful) ways that ear candling can impact your health:
- Your Eardrum might accidentally get pierced: There’s a risk that comes with sticking anything in your ears! Your hearing will suffer significant harm and discomfort if you end up puncturing your eardrum. If this happens it’s very likely that you will need to get professional assistance.
- You could severely burn your face: Look, any time you’re positioning candles that close to your face, there’s a good possibility you’ll burn yourself. Accidents will happen! Severe burns on the face are not the only dangers, you could also catch your hair on fire or drip hot wax into your eye.
- You can leave candle wax behind in your ear: Even if you don’t get burned, surplus ear candle wax can go into your ears. This Leftover wax can cause acute discomfort and, eventually, affect your hearing.
- Your ear can be severely burned: Fire is hot, and so is melting candle wax. Your ear is really sensitive and significant burning can occur if the flame or the hot wax gets somewhere it shouldn’t.
- You can push that earwax even further up into your ear: Putting an ear candle into your ear can actually jam earwax further into the ear canal much like when you utilize a cotton swab. Your earwax issue can be worsened by earwax candling, in other words! Other complications, from hearing loss to ear infections can also be the outcome.
So, is ear candling endorsed by hearing healthcare professionals? No… not even a little! Not only is ear candling not practical, it’s actually very dangerous!
A better way to handle earwax
Earwax is actually a good thing. It’s helpful for your ears in normal quantities. It’s only when there’s too much earwax (or it isn’t draining correctly) that you start to have issues. So… if you can’t make use of a burning candle to remove earwax, what should you do?
Consult a hearing specialist if you have a persistent earwax blockage. Usually, they will suggest that you try some at-home solutions, like a saline wash, to loosen the wax allowing it to drip out on its own. But in some cases, they will perform a cleaning for you.
We can get rid of the wax safely with specialty tools and training.
In general, you should stay away from techniques such as utilizing cotton swabs and earwax candling. Nothing smaller than your finger should be put into your ears unless advised by your hearing specialist or doctor.
How to help your ears feel better
If accumulated earwax is causing you a bit of discomfort or misery, you should schedule an appointment with us. We will be able to help you clear any stubborn earwax out of your ears and get you back to feeling normal.