What You Need to Know About Ear Candling

Woman receiving ear candle treatment

DIY is all the rage nowadays and everybody likes a quick easy fix. Sink Leaking? Just search YouTube for the ideal plumbing tutorial, buy the recommended tools, and go to work! A plumber would most likely be a bit more efficient but then you wouldn’t get that sense of self-satisfaction that comes with doing it on your own.

At least, until your sink starts to leak again. Because, as it turns out, in some cases a DIY fix is no substitute for the well-sharpened 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 coming back to. It doesn’t really sound very appealing, does it? Let’s dive into exactly what earwax candling is and its dangers.

What is ear candling?

Have you ever had a stuffy-ear sort of feeling? Occasionally, it occurs when you’re ill and your ear fills with mucus. In other situations, it may occur because you have a surplus of earwax in your ears (and surplus earwax can have a variety of causes). When this occurs, you may experience some discomfort. You may even experience a temporary loss of hearing. It kind of stinks!

Some individuals, as a result, think that ear candling is just the inexpensive and novel solution they need. The concept is that a special hollow candle is placed in your ear (non-burning end). Individuals believe that the wax and mucus are pulled out by the combination of heat and pressure changes in your ear.

Healthcare professionals absolutely don’t encourage this technique. If you’re looking for evidence that ear candling really works and pulls out wax, you won’t find any. Nearly every single hearing healthcare professional, as a result, will strongly advocate against using this practice ever. (Does ear candling help with sinus pressure? Also no.)

Just listen to the FDA! (What is the FDA saying about ear candling? Basically, don’t do it!)

The drawbacks of ear candling

Initially, ear candling might feel completely safe. It’s just a tiny flame. And the “equipment” is specialized. And individuals on the internet said it was safe! So, how could ear candling be dangerous?

Sadly, there’s no getting around the fact that ear candling can be absolutely hazardous. What negative impacts can ear candling have? Ear candling can impact your health in the following negative and possibly painful ways:

  • Your Eardrum might accidentally get punctured: There’s a danger that comes with pushing anything in your ears! Your hearing will suffer significant damage and discomfort if you end up puncturing your eardrum. If this occurs it’s very likely that you will have to get professional help.
  • Your ear can be seriously burned: The fire and the melting ear candle wax are very hot. If the tip of the candle or the wax gets where it’s not supposed to, you’re facing some significant burning possibilities in your ear (and your ear is a sensitive spot).
  • You can push that earwax even further into your ear: In much the same way that pushing a Q-tip in your ear can pack the earwax into an ever-more-dense blockage, so too can inserting a specialized candle in your ear. Your earwax issue can be worsened by earwax candling, in other words! Other complications, from hearing loss to ear infections can also be the consequence.
  • You can leave candle wax behind in your ear: Even if you don’t get burned, residual ear candle wax can get left behind in your ears. Your hearing can become impacted from this, not to mention the discomfort.
  • Your face could be severely burned: There’s always a fairly good chance that if you’re holding a flame up by your ear, you could burn your face. Accidents will happen! Severe burns on the face are not the only dangers, you could also catch your hair on fire or drip hot wax into your eye.

So, is ear candling endorsed by hearing healthcare professionals? Not at all! Ultimately, earwax candling isn’t simply ineffective, it’s downright dangerous.

A better way to handle earwax

Ear wax is generally rather healthy. It’s helpful for your ears in normal quantities. It’s only when there’s too much earwax (or it isn’t draining well) that you start to have difficulty. So… if you can’t utilize a burning candle to get rid of earwax, what should you do?

If you have an earwax blockage, the best thing to do may be speaking with a hearing specialist. Normally, they will suggest that you try some at-home solutions, like a saline wash, to loosen the wax allowing it to run out by itself. But in some situations, they will perform a cleaning for you.

We can get rid of the wax safely with specialty tools and training.

It’s best to avoid things like ear candles and cotton swabs. Unless your hearing specialist says differently, it’s a good strategy to never put anything smaller than your finger in your ear.

Give your ears some relief

If surplus earwax is causing you a bit of discomfort or misery, you should schedule an appointment with us. We can help you get back to normal by clearing away any stubborn earwax.


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.