What is Ear Candling? Does it really work?

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The human body is incomplete without the five sense organs namely eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin. Now the main point arises how to keep them neat and clean? For cleaning of the ear, ear candling is getting popular as one of the most common procedure to remove ear wax. Accumulation of ear wax is one of the most common otologic conditions and there are many procedures to remove ear wax. 

Ear candling has gained a huge following and people are trying it on a very large scale. Today, we are going to discuss the impacts and effects of ear candling.   

What is ear candling and how it is done?

Ear candling or sometimes termed as ear coning is the practice of placing a hollow lit candle made up of a fabric thread dipped in beeswax into the ear in the external auditory canal. The heat of the candle is supposed to pull up the ear wax. The warmth of the lit candle is supposed to create a vacuum. When the candle is completely burnt, a brown waxy substance is obtained which is believed to be the mixture of ear wax, bacteria, and debris. 

It is believed by the ear candling practitioners that wax from the candle is not dripped into the ear during the procedure. The procedure is used as an alternative solution for removing ear wax and can be performed by the alternative therapists, beauticians or at times, by the patients on their own using the kits. Mainly, the procedure is used to remove ear wax but at times it is also touted to relieve the following issues:

  • Sinus Infection
  • Ear Infections
  • Solve Tinnitus issue
  • Relieve Vertigo
  • Relieve sour throat, cold and flue
  • Swimmer’s ear
  • Relieve stress, headache and strengthen the brain
ear candling
Image Credit: Bjørn Bulthuis

Does ear candling work? Is it safe to do?

Undoubtedly, ear wax is irritating but should you insert a lit candle into your year to get rid of it? Many people may say yes in response, but doctors and researchers suggest not applying this method to remove ear wax or to treat any other issues as discussed above. There are no scientific proofs of thinking of ear candling as a boon. Even the doctors and researchers say that it might cause serious injuries to the patient and can do more harm than benefit. The procedure might push earwax deeper into the ear canal. It might also cause:

  • Burns on the face, ear canal, eardrum, middle year, hair, and scalp
  • Puncture of the eardrum due to dripping hot wax which will lead to deafness
  • Deposit of beeswax in the ear canal
  • Delay in medical help might lead to serious infections

Also Read: What is Maskne? How to Prevent it?

How to remove earwax?

Though ear candling is getting popular these days because of its heavy advertisements but the claims of its clinical effectiveness have not been verified. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the United States in an article published on February 18, 2010, has warned the people to avoid ear candling. It is associated with considerable risks so instead of accepting this method; we will suggest you consult a heath professional. The doctor might use suction cleaning, cerumen spoon, forceps, and irrigation method to remove the earwax.


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