What You Need To Know About Ear Candling
Ear candling is an ancient alternative practice that is used to help remove wax in the ear. Ear candling is also used by alternative therapists to give relief for those who suffer with sinus problems too.
Sometimes referred to as ear coning or even thermal-auricular therapy, this form of alternative medicine practice has grown tremendously in popularity over the past 20 years.
But it is important to understand the correct way to use this treatment, as well as being aware of the safety issues before trying it. The internet is full of exaggerated claims about the benefits of ear candling, so before subjecting yourself to this procedure it’s important that you fully understand what it entails.
Origin of ear candling
Ear candling is claimed to date back to 2500 B.C and was practiced by most of the world’s ancient civilisations, including the Egyptians and the Ancient Greeks. Evidence of ear candling has also been found in the Orient.
It has been used both spiritually and as a treatment for clearing the ears and sinuses. It is said that American Hopi Indians of North Arizona and shaman healers also used ear candling as part of their ritual and healing ceremonies.
How is it done?
Ear candles are made from cotton or linen that has been soaked in wax and allowed to harden. They are carefully placed in the ear canal, and once in position the candle is lit. The manufacturers claim that whilst burning, the ear candles create a low-level vacuum inside the ear that is believed to draw the ear wax and debris out.
Some therapists believe that the smoke from the candle can dry out the ear canal and stimulate the body’s natural excretion of foreign bodies and wax through the ear.
Benefits of ear candling
It is stated by practitioners that in addition to helping to clear out the ear, candling can also have a protective effect. Proponents suggest the procedure cleans and lubricates the inner ear, thereby protecting it from bacteria and fungus, and for those that suffer from wax, it can also help support the body’s natural cleaning system.
Many people choose to use ear candles prior to a flight in order to clear the ear of any excess wax buildup. Other uses for ear candling include getting rid of ringing or noises in the ears, tackling hearing impairment, relaxing and calming the body when stressed, and stimulating local and reflex energy flow.
As with any practice that uses a flame, ear candling comes with the risk of burning the outer ear, facial skin and hair. If done clumsily, it could result in a perforated ear drum, while further obstruction of the ear can also occur if wax is pushed deeper into the ear canal.
It’s important not to use ear candling if there is infection or inflammation in the ear or if there is a risk of an allergic reaction. All of this highlights the importance of having this treatment performed by a professional who has been properly trained.
Occasionally some people can experience a mild headache or popping in the ear shortly after the treatment, but these quickly subside.
How to do it yourself
As already stated, it’s always best to go to a professional for ear candling, as the procedure requires knowledge and some skill to do it safely. But for those that choose to do it at home, you’ll need an assistant familiar with the practice to keep an eye on the candle during the treatment.
Once the candle is in place, your assistant should light the candle as it’s too tricky to do on your own. The candle should be left to burn for no more than three to four inches, and this is the reason you need somebody to keep a watchful eye on the proceedings.
To extinguish the flame safely, place the candle in a cup of water.
Copyright © Quinessence Aromatherapy Ltd 2015. Written by Sue Charles