Ear Candling Definition

Ear Candling: This centuries-old folk medicine practice involves the use of hollow candles that are rolled into the shape of a tube. When placed in the ear and lit, ear wax, fungus, etc. are drawn to the heat and removed from the ear. Following this non-painful procedure, the candles may be unrolled to view the nature and quantity of the contents that have been removed and in order to determine if more than one candle would be of benefit. Doctors and medical scientists have stated that the practice of ear candling has been shown to actually be ineffective at creating the vacuum in which is required to extract the toxins and impurities in the ear canal. The benefits claimed for ear candling are vague, unscientific and even contradictory, and no scientific control studies have been done to medically document the health benefits of ear candling. It has also been stated that ear candling has resulted in injuries sustained from the practice today. Placing a candle inside the ear can potentially lead to burns, infection, obstruction of the ear canal and perforation of the eardrum. One particular concern is wax dripping into the ear, which can cause internal burning and blockage.

Manufacturers of ear candles often refer to them as Hopi ear candles, referring to the Hopi Native American nation. In Europe some ear candles are regulated as medical devices tested for safety. Selling or importing ear candles with medical claim is illegal in the United States and Canada.

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