Review of Ear candle treatment

Howard Clemmow – Southwell Life

As a died-in-the-wool bloke, you’re generally about as likely to find me indulging in holistic health remedies as nipping down to the beauticians to have my nails manicured. However, I have long suffered from a particular health problem; specifically excessive wax build-up in my ears. Usually this manifests itself in the form of hearing impairment and a “bunged up” feeling in my ear passages.

A few years ago I used to enjoy free diving with a snorkel on my summer holidays. The water pressure would drive the wax into my ears and by the end of the holiday I’d be deaf as a post. Then I’d have a very uncomfortable flight home and book an appointment with the doctor to have my ears syringed as soon as I got back. I don’t know if you’ve ever had your ears syringed but it’s not an enjoyable experience, rather like someone blasting a jet wash into your ear.

Consequently, when offered the opportunity to try out Hopi Ear Candles I jumped at the chance. One of the main benefits of the therapy is that it gently clears the ear passages; another is that it soothes the lining of the Eustachian tubes and moisturises them with a mixture of essential oils. Other benefits include relaxation and clearing of the nasal airways.

My therapy was carried out by Jacky Huson at Touch Therapy. Soothing music is playing, the air is fragrant with scented candles and it’s like stepping into another world. Jacky begins the session by running through a brief health questionnaire and then it’s time for the treatment. Forget conventional candles, Hopi Ear Candles are actually hollow tubes made out of bees wax infused with essential oils with a filter located close to the bottom. You lie on your side on a massage couch so that the candle is vertical as it is pushed gently into your ear and Jacky holds it in place.

The physical action of balancing your ear canals works in two ways. Firstly the candle acts as a chimney drawing air through your Eustachian tube and up into the candle. At the same time, the burning of the wax sets up a mild vibration in the air inside the tube which both massages the inside of your ear and promotes secretion in the sinuses. The essential oils stimulate blood flow and strengthen the cleansing circulation of the lymph glands. The total effect is to encourage the body’s natural processes to function more effectively. In order to allow the oils to take full effect during the next day or two, it is advisable to protect the ears from water while showering or hair-washing.

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It’s a very pleasant sensation while the candles are burning; they make a sizzling noise and there is a sensation of warmth within the ear – infinitely better than having them syringed. After the candle-burning (it takes about ten minutes per ear) Jacky did a thorough massage around my ears, scalp and face to help stimulate the sinuses and lymph and maximise the effect of the treatment. When it was over my ear passages felt much freer and that sensation increased over the following 24 hours.

I’d definitely like to experience Hopi Ear Candles again. It’s a very relaxing experience and has a tangible benefit in decreased congestion within the inner ear. I’m going to Thailand this summer and I will once again be doing Jacques Cousteau impersonations over a coral reef.

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