Call Us Today! 518-638-4363
Center For Better Hearing - Glens Falls, NY

Woman receiving ear candle treatment

DIY is all the rage these days and everybody likes a quick easy fix. Sink Leaking? Just search YouTube for the suitable plumbing tutorial, go get the suggested tools, and get to work! It may take you a little bit longer than it would take a plumber, but there’s no replacement for the satisfaction you feel, right?

But that feeling only lasts until your sink begins leaking again. Because, as it turns out, in some cases a DIY fix is no substitute for the well-honed skills of a professional.

Sometimes, that’s difficult to admit. Ear candling or earwax candling is a perfect example of a DIY fix that people keep coming 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 dig into that.

Ear candling – what is it?

Have you ever had a plugged-ear kind of feeling? On occasion, your ear will fill with mucus when you’re sick. In other instances, it may occur because you have too much earwax in your ears (and surplus earwax can have any number of causes). This can sometimes be very uncomfortable. Your hearing might even temporarily go. It kind of stinks!

Because of this, some people believe they have encountered what seems to be a natural and novel option: ear candling. The concept is that a special hollow candle is put in your ear (non-burning end). Individuals think that the wax and mucus are pulled out by the combination of heat and pressure changes inside your ear.

It should be quickly noted that ear candling is not recommended by healthcare professionals. If you’re searching for evidence that ear candling really works and draws out wax, you won’t find any. Essentially, most hearing and healthcare professionals will emphatically advise 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? In essence, don’t do it!)

What are the disadvantages of ear candling?

Ear candling may feel safe, at first. It’s not as if it’s a huge flame. And the “equipment” is specialized. And there are lots of people online who maintain that it’s completely safe. So, how could ear candling be harmful?

Sadly, there’s no mistaking the fact that ear candling can be downright dangerous. What negative affects can ear candling have? Ear candling can affect your health in the following negative and potentially painful ways:

  • You could severely burn your face: There’s always a pretty good chance that if you’re holding a flame up near your ear, you could burn your face. Everyone has accidents now and then. Severe burns on the face are not the only dangers, you could also catch your hair on fire or trickle hot wax into your eye.
  • You can push that earwax even further up into your ear: Inserting an ear candle into your ear can actually force earwax further into the ear canal much like when you use a cotton swab. Your earwax problem can be worsened by earwax candling, in other words! This can lead to all kinds of other complications from hearing loss to serious infections.
  • You can leave candle wax behind in your ear: Even if you don’t get burned, surplus ear candle wax can get left behind in your ears. This leftover wax can cause serious discomfort and, eventually, affect your hearing.
  • Your ear can be seriously burned: Fire is hot, and so is melting candle wax. Your ear is really sensitive and considerable burning can happen if the flame or the hot wax gets someplace it shouldn’t.
  • You could accidentally puncture your eardrum: There’s a risk that comes with pushing anything in your ears! You may accidentally pierce your eardrum, creating significant discomfort and harm to your hearing. Frequently, this is something that has to be treated by a hearing professional.

So, is ear candling recommended by hearing healthcare professionals? Not at all! Ultimately, earwax candling isn’t only useless, it’s utterly dangerous.

A better way to manage earwax

Ear wax is generally rather healthy. In normal quantities, it’s good for your ears. Problems begin when there’s an overabundance of earwax or when it won’t drain effectively. So what should you do if utilizing a candle is a bad strategy?

If you have an earwax obstruction, the best thing to do might be consulting with a hearing specialist. They might advise some at-home solutions (including using saline or mineral oil to soften the wax, allowing it to kind of run out on its own). But in some circumstances, they will do a cleaning for you.

Hearing specialists have special tools and training that let them clear away wax without harming your ear.

Generally, you should avoid techniques like using cotton swabs and earwax candling. Nothing smaller than your finger should go into your ears unless advised by your hearing specialist or physician.

Give your ears some relief

If surplus earwax is causing you a bit of discomfort or distress, you should schedule an appointment with us. We will be capable of helping you clean any stubborn earwax out of your ears and get you back to feeling normal.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment


The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call Us Today