Why you should NOT use ear candles
Ear Candling is a practice that alternative medicine practitioners claim will remove unwanted ear wax, impurities and toxins from the ear. It is also alleged to contribute to a greater sense of well-being as well as enhanced physical and mental health. In the practice, a person lies down with one ear facing upwards. A candle is then positioned in the ear and set alight. The practice is also known as thermal auricular therapy and ear coning, because of the particular shape of the candles used.
Alternatives to ear candling
There are a variety of medically approved alternatives to ear candling that can be carried out at home or by a doctor. An ear flush or ear irrigation is a routine procedure that can be carried out by a doctor or performed using a home kit. It involves ‘flushing’ the ear gently using a bulb syringe filled with simple warm water or a combination ofwater and a saline solution. Ear flushing should never be carried out if one is experiencing a perforated eardrum, a lowered immune system or an active ear infection. When in doubt, it is always best to seek medical advice first. Drops for softening earwax can also be purchased over the counter from pharmacies.
Currently, alternative practitioners are not required to undergo the same kinds of standardized training and testing that medical practitioners are subject to. Consequently, it is advisable to exercise caution and diligence before visiting any given provider of an alternative medicine, and, if in doubt, consult with a medically qualified doctor who can advise you on the potential benefits and risks of the practice.