DIY is all the rage nowadays and everybody appreciates a quick easy fix. Got a leaky sink? You can learn about how to fix that from a YouTube video. It might take you a little bit longer than it would take a plumber, but there’s no substitute for the gratification you feel, right?
At least, until your sink begins leaking again. Because, as it turns out, sometimes a DIY fix is no replacement for the well-honed skills of a professional.
It isn’t always easy to acknowledge that this is the situation. Ear candling or earwax candling is a perfect example of a DIY fix that individuals keep going back to. It sounds… kind of gross, right? 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 sort of feeling? Sometimes, it occurs when you’re sick and your ear fills with mucus. In other instances, it might happen because you have a surplus of earwax in your ears (and too much earwax can have any number of causes). When this occurs, you might experience a certain amount of discomfort. Your hearing may even temporarily go. It sort of stinks!
Some people, as a result, believe that ear candling is just the inexpensive and novel solution they need. The concept is to place the non-burning end of a special, hollow candle in your ear. Individuals think that the wax and mucus are pulled out by the combination of heat and pressure changes inside your ear.
Healthcare professionals absolutely don’t recommend this approach. If you’re looking for evidence that ear candling actually works and pulls out wax, you won’t find any. Nearly every single hearing healthcare professional, as a result, will strongly recommend against utilizing this technique ever. Ear candling also has no effect on sinus pressure.
Just listen to the FDA! (What is the FDA advising about ear candling? Basically, don’t do it!)
What are the downsides of ear candling?
Ear candling may feel safe, at first. It’s a really small flame. And you’re utilizing “specialized” equipment. And individuals on the internet claimed it was safe! So how could it be possible for ear candling to be dangerous?
Ear candling can, unfortunately, be very hazardous and there’s no way to get around that! What negative impacts can ear candling have? Ear candling can impact your health in the following negative and possibly painful ways:
- The earwax can be pushed even further into your ear: In much the same way that sticking a Q-tip in your ear can smoosh the earwax into an ever-more-dense blockage, so too can sticking a specialized candle in your ear. Your earwax problem can be worsened by earwax candling, in other words! This can trigger all sorts of other complications from hearing loss to serious infections.
- You can cause severe burns to your ear: Fire is hot, and so is melting candle wax. If the tip of the candle or the wax goes into where it’s not supposed to, you’re looking at some considerable burning possibilities in your ear (and your ear is a sensitive spot).
- Your ear can have residual candle wax left behind: The candle wax can get left behind in your ears even if you don’t get burned. Your hearing can become impacted from this, not to mention the discomfort.
- You could severely burn your face: Look, any time you’re holding candles that close to your face, there’s a strong possibility you’ll get a burn. Accidents will happen! Severe burns on the face aren’t the only dangers, you could also catch your hair on fire or trickle hot wax into your eye.
- Your Eardrum could accidentally get pierced: There’s a risk that comes with pushing anything in your ears! Your hearing will suffer considerable damage and discomfort if you end up puncturing your eardrum. Often, this is something that must be treated by a hearing professional.
So, do hearing healthcare professionals recommend ear candling? Not at all! Ultimately, earwax candling isn’t simply ineffective, it’s utterly dangerous.
A better way to Tackle earwax
Ear wax is normally rather healthy. In normal quantities, it’s good for your ears. Issues start when there’s too much earwax or when it won’t properly drain. So what should you do if making use of a candle is a bad idea?
Talk to a hearing specialist if you have a persistent earwax obstruction. Typically, they will suggest that you try some at-home solutions, such as a saline wash, to loosen the wax allowing it to drip out on its own. But in some situations, they will perform a cleaning for you.
We can remove the wax safely with specialty tools and training.
Generally, you should avoid techniques like utilizing 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.
How to help your ears feel better
If accumulated earwax is causing you a bit of discomfort or misery, you should make 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.