Yes, Ear wax! We all don’t like it.. but … should you really go sticking a candle down your ear to get rid of it? 
I have seen lots of videos posted online showing how ear candling works, and had so many people ask me if this is safe for our ears? In this blog I aim to clear some of the misconceptions about ear candling..   



What is Ear Candling?

Ear Candling is a practice that alternative medicine practitioners claim that it helps to prevent wax build-up, ringing in ears, getting rid of sinus infections, chronic neck and ear pain, rebalance of mental state and relaxation. There are various claims about the mechanism by which ear candling works.  One mechanism is that when one end of the candle is lit, it heats up earwax in your ear canal and it creates a suction effect to pull that wax out of your ear canal and pull it into the candle.  It is also believed by some individuals that heat from the candle melts and softens the wax, which falls out over the next few days.  After the session, the practitioners will  open up the ear candle to reveal a build-up of debris and wax inside the candle.

Misconception 1 – Ear candling removes ear wax by suction

Earwax is sticky and adheres quite strongly to the inner sides of the ear and requires very strong suction to remove it.  A study reported that ear wax removal candles failed to create the required suction to remove ear wax and actually did not create any kind of suction at all.  Realistically speaking, If a suction effect was created by the ear candle, we wouldn’t see smoke coming out from the bottom of the candle.  And also if a suction effect was achieved, strong enough to pull ear wax out of the ear canal, it would most likely rupture the ear drum. This is because our ear drum is only made of three thin layers of epithelium and collagen.

Misconception 2 – Ear candling melts ear wax and forces it to fall out

Studies carried out have reported that the temperature created by the candle in the ear canal was much lower than body temperature. This is not high enough to melt the ear wax in the ear canal. Realistically speaking, ear wax would re-harden once the ear candle has been removed out. This therefore fails to explain how softened ear wax would fall out of the ear in the following days after ear candling

Misconception 3 – The debris found in the opened up candle is evidence of ear wax and toxins

Studies have revealed that the debris build up occurs in candles even when they are simply set alight.  Another study analysed the debris in the ear candles after they have been use. They reported that the components of the debris only contained substances that were present in the candle already. 

Misconception 4 – Passages in your head are all connected and get cleared if the ear canal is cleared

Ear candlers believe that passages in the head are all connected. Therefore if the ear canal is cleared, the rest of the pathways will get cleared, leaving you with a clean head. Now what no one will tell you, apart from your Audiologist is that, the ear drum actually blocks off the ear canal. It separates it from your middle ear space and inner ear.  

And Lastly…. 
The smoke that comes out from the bottom of an ear candle for a few minutes, can leave that soot like material inside your ear canal. This can have negative consequences on your health.  Studies have shown that children who grow up in households with smoke are at a high risk of ear infections. so why would you want to make your ear a home for ear infections? 

Come see us in FLEET – EAR WAX REMOVAL -GOLDEN EARS AUDIOLOGY CLINIC for Microsuction, done in a safe way using highly sophisticated equipment

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