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Readers Respond: Pros and Cons of Ear Candling

Responses: 63


Ear Candling

i had a buzzing in my ear for 3-4 months. My GP and also a specialist said it was tinnitus and that nothing can be done and that I will have to live with it. So I tried an ear candle. Long story short... a couple days later the buzzing stopped. It always amazes me how many doctors there are out there that just don't know.
—Guest darren

Won't fly without candling

I've always had a great deal of pain in my ear when flying and it resisted equalizing. Years ago someone suggested I try candling and I was desperate enough to do so. I was sceptical because I'm a very analytical person. I candled before my next flight and confess I was amazed when my ear equalized with no pain or difficulty. Since that time I make sure to candle before a flight and then have no problems. The times I've been unable to do so my ear resisted equalizing and was extremely painful. I don't care how it works but simply accept the relief gratefully.
—Guest Guest Laura

It's all physics

I've never had direct experience with it. I'm trying to learn about it. You should expect that the burning end is drawing air to the wick from the outside and inside of the candle. This means air is flowing inside the candle, and if you shove it inside your ear, air would flow into your ear, then through the candle, to the flame, then be combusted. Since the opening is so small and the resistance to air flow so high ( a lot more air would be used for combustion from the side open to the air, not stuck in the ear), it seems air flow inside the candle would be very small (flowing air equals "vacuum", or reduced pressure - partial vacuum, that is) Also, beeswax is a natural substance which could probably produce numerous combustion products depending on the source of pollen, so without a camera in your ear, you need a way to tell the difference between burnt beeswax, unburned beeswax, and earwax in order to decide what that stuff is.
—Guest fizzickschick

Varied Results

I am one of those people who finds ear candling enjoyable and relaxing. I also notice a difference in my hearing - it is more sensitive especially to high pitched noises. I have also performed this technique on several of my friends and I have noticed different results with each person. When you're finished and you cut the remaining cone open you see that some people end up with more of the brown residue than others. And some people have more of the white powdery residue, which is supposed to be yeast, more than others do. If it has been "proven" ineffective then why are the results so varied from individual to individual?
—Guest burquegirl

Prefer to use Hydrogen Peroxide

I've used ear candles on myself and others, with both good and neutral effects. Never negative. Still, I have seen for myself that wax can travel DOWN the candle, so I always position them at a 30 degree angle, not straight up and down. Also, I never let them burn more than halfway, as I was taught when I first started. I do think they have benefits, but I am much more likely to put a small amount of hydrogen peroxide in my ear for 8-10 minutes and let that get out the wax and bacteria than use an ear candle: No fire or hot wax to worry about, and I can do it myself, which is an added bonus.

Still on the Fence

My son has terrible ear wax problems. the procedures at the doctors' offices sends him into panic attacks and he always screams in pain. Before candling, his ears will stink like goop is rotting in his ears. After candling, it doesn't stink anymore. I am careful to oil his ears after the procedure. I have no doubt that the candling draws out earwax. When finished, I cut the remaining portion of the candle open and the goop at the bottom is bright orange. It can no way be the wax from the candle, which is pale white and made with beeswax. I began looking at the cons of candling because my family practitioner advised against it, but seeing my son have panic attacks at the ear "specialist's" tactics, I think that I will stick to candling.
—Guest tracie

Felt Suction in My Ear

I just did it. Both of my ears are getting over infection.. and one was totally blocked today ( left ear) and the other was only partial. (right) My husband didn't believe at first that what was inside was ear wax until he saw the difference. I did BOTH ears... The one ear that I was having MOST trouble with have at least 3 or 4x more "wax" In the candle at the end then the other one. I definitely felt a suction in my ear as it was going soooooooooo.....
—Guest guest

On the fence about this

The first time I heard about ear candling I was at a spa. I had a migraine that was going on for three days with no relief so I thought sure why not. Within a short amount of time my headache was gone. So I bought some and have done my husbands and my fathers ears, both of them have lots of earaches. Since then they have had fewer and less intense earaches. I've also notice that there was more "wax" in the candle their first time and less after. We use to do it twice a year. But the last time, I noticed wax in the candle that looked like it dripped from the top of the candle...inside. If that drip went into the ear......OMG. So now I'm not to sure about this and if its not FDA approved, I don't know if it is worth the risks. Both my husband and my father have been bugging me to candle their ears again because they are starting to hurt. Hope this helps.
—Guest nottosure

Definitely Not Ear Wax!

I know for a fact that the ear wax looking substance at the bottom of the candle after the candling process has been complete is Definitely Not Ear Wax! I have heard of placing the candle into a cup and proceeding as if you were candling an ear. In the end, You will have the same waxy substance at the bottom. Its a selling point. I also was on a site that sold ear candles and they bared the truth on this. Why would the manufacturers say this if it were in fact not true?
—Guest Frank

Helped with Sinus Pressure

After healing my body with food to completely releive the chronic rhinosinusitus I have lived with my whole life, I could finally breath but noticed a clogged feeling in my ears. Since I was not getting infections anymore I decided to ear candle and see how it was. I really enjoyed the feeling and relief from it. It was crazy how much wax came out of my boyfriend ears! He had long thick amber drips up the side of the candle. I had tons of powder with little chuncks of amber wax, like little pebbles. I liked the experience very much. I will continue to candle as well as research.
—Guest Cahaus

Yes, that gunk is ear wax

Some people say that its just crap from the candle, when you cut open a used ear candle. but if you are brave enough to touch it to the tip of you tongue, you will surely know its earwax, and I do recommend brushing your teeth after that. lol
—Guest someone

It works!

I was having terrible dizzy spells a while back & squishiness in my ears, also car sickness. Candled them & it was gone!
—Guest Dreamspirations

It does NOT work

Folks: It does NOT work, there is NO negative pressure, it has frequently been tested (scientifically rather than from hearsay) to find ZERO effect apart from being a potentially relaxing experience. Any residue is ALWAYS from the candle, NOT from the ears. It's like the Emperor's new clothes, not enough people are willing to ask themselves how it could possibly work, without there being a vacuum at the very least. Wake up, you'll laugh at yourself for having believed in this :)
—Guest Harry

Sore Ears

I had it done about 2 months ago and at the time I really enjoyed the experience because I had Reiki at the same time and afterwards a lovely face massage but in the weeks after the treatment my ears really hurt and they are only just feeling okay now.
—Guest Amy

My Hair Caught on Fire

Ear candling can be hazardous to your hair and possibly worse burns to your skin. My hair caught on fire the last time I had my ears candled. OMG... thank goodness for the nearby bowl of water that got dumped over my head. I'm still willing to have my ears candled again because I've had it done several times before and do enjoy having it done. Just be careful!
—Guest Lisa

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