I checked with a good friend who has been an MD in family practice for 35 years, and he recommends Mineral oil combined with irrigation with warm water as the best and safest method of removing hardened ear wax. He does NOT recommend Hydrogen Peroxide--he says it is too strong a substance to put in contact with the highly delicate ear drum. Here is his method: Obtain mineral oil at any drugstore (it is better than other oils because it is quite thin), warm about 2 - 3 tablespoons in a container placed in very warm (but not boiling water) until it is a little above body temp. Lie on your side, with the ear to be de-waxed UP. Fill an eye dropper with the warm oil and fill your ear with it. Lie still for approx. 5 minutes. Get up and empty oil into sink. Do this procedure the following day or two. This will soften the wax and may even dissolve it completely. Now, warm some water, again to just above body temp, or as warm as you can stand, fill a bulb syringe (also readily available at drugstore), and flush out your ear with the warm water. It may take several syringes of water, but his will bring out the wax.
I am a Registered Medical Assistant and used to work for an ear specialist. He showed us a video on ear/ER cases. The #1 most frequent ear damages are caused by using Q-Tips. Several were men and women who were in their bathroom with a Q-tip in their ear, possibly, not too far in. Then one of their kids comes RUNNING into the bathroom slamming the arm and q-tip DEEP into the ear canal and puncturing the ear drum.
Bobby Pins ARE JUST AS DANGEROUS, POSSIBLY WORSE BECAUSE THEY ARE METAL!!! I can see brain injuries from a bobby pin being SLAMMED DEEP INTO THE EAR DRUM and possibly on into the brain.
The old saying: "DON'T STICK ANYTHING INTO YOUR EARS LARGER THAN YOUR ELBOW!!!"
Your question led me to the original post, which I have never read.
I have always had trouble with ear wax but noticed in recent months that it hasn't been much of an issue. I didn't think anything of it until I read the above post.
Interestingly, I have been consuming dried cranberries ("craisins" from Costco) for months. I put them in my steel cut oats, which I eat 5 days a week. I don't really know how many I am eating a day - maybe a little over 2 tablespoons?
Here is my recipe for Steel Cut Oats, by the way. It is my very favorite breakfast. I started making it when I got an Instant Pot.
- 1 cup steel cut oats
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 cup Craisins
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut
- 1/4 t salt
I put all of this in the Instant Pot before I go to bed. I use the "multigrain setting" and set the timer for 6 hours. In the morning it takes it a little over an hour to cook. (time to heat the water, 40 minutes at high pressure, 10 minutes natural pressure release.)
This recipe makes 3 servings. I add a little bit of plant butter and maple syrup right before serving.
If no one joins me for any, I save the leftovers in the fridge and reheat some for a snack or breakfast another time. :)
I was looking here on EC for suggestions in softening earwax on a daily basis to keep the wax moist.
My earwax is getting very dry as I get older and I intuitively thought a drop or two of oil in the ears before bed would help, but wondered what type oil others might have used for maintenance purposes (if you will) vs. occasional earwax removal.
Anyway! I stumbled across a poster who was scolding those who mentioned using Q-tips and/or bobby pins for wax removal saying that they could perforate their eardrums, etc.
The old saying: "DON'T STICK ANYTHING INTO YOUR EARS LARGER THAN YOUR ELBOW!!! "
I think it's safe to assume that she meant anything smaller than your elbow. :D
Happy (and very healthy) New Year all! :)
P.S. Though I didn't find any mention of an oil recommended for daily use here on EC, I found suggestions on another site, from an ENT, who suggested baby oil or olive oil for daily use. I went with the olive oil since baby oil has fragrance added. Besides, babies don't have the fine motor skills or the chemistry knowledge to create oil anyway. (Haha) :)
Baking Soda, Oregano Oil
It is common to have wax accumulation and itchy ears.
One formula I've tried with success is as follows:
I take my finger (my pinky) and barely wet with water and dab that into baking soda. I insert into each ear. There are other ways to get a bit of baking soda (barely moistened) into ears (q-tips) but the digital way is my favorite. I let that dry completely in each ear for four or five hours. I clean the outside of the ear to get rid of the white residue but don't touch the soda deeper in the outer ear canal. I just let the baking soda work its absorbing action for four or five hours.
Then I get out my Oregano Oil and using the dropper drip one drop into each ear. Yes it stings. Some people might not be able to take the stinging so if too much I'd swish out with an ear syringe of warm water if oregano is too painful. But although it stings, I think it is killing any infection in the outer ear canal that contributes to itching.
Now in a day or two an amazing thing happens (at least in my case).... a film is emitted from each ear. I might have to reapply two or three times in a month, but my ears are free from itching and any crusty buildup.
To debunk a few myths and misunderstandings re ear cones/ candles...... I have been a professionally trained and practising auricular (ear) therapist for more than 15 years and am quite well aware of the attitude towards candling, negative and positive. The first and most important part of this therapy is whether a therapist has been trained professionally as opposed to a 2 hour course or reading a book! The 2nd is the type of candles that are used - 100% natural ingredients as a candle (tube) not a cone. When both are correct then the wax will be gently removed from the ears, equilibrium will be restored, leaving no negative side effects. A 'crackling' in the ears after a treatment, as reported by one correspondent, suggests that too much wax was removed - we need some wax in our ears - and incorrect cones/candling were used. She also mentioned the therapist told her she could tell by the removed wax the patient had had many ear infections. This is total rubbish and said I suspect to impress the patient! The ONLY readings you can get from the wax is whether it is impacted wax (it will be a dark colour and quite hard) or just excess wax (which many people have). Nothing more. In all my years of treating hundreds of patients, I have never had anyone dissatisfied.
Hi P. I used to do this a lot in the past. It's not ear wax at the end of the ear cone candles, it's bee's wax from the candle! I tested it by burning down a candle without putting it against my ear.However, it is very relaxing!!
I decided to try cranberries for liver cleansing - hope that worked - but it most definitely worked on earwax, specifically too much.
Every 5-6 years I get so much earwax build-up in one ear that I think I've gone deaf. The cranberries (well, actually Craisins, which are dried cranberries) virtually eliminated my earwax altogether, and fixed my 'deafness' after 4-5 months of no hearing out the left ear!
The use of ear candles encourages relaxation, which as part of a healthy lifestyle, may help living well with: Rhinitis, Sinusitis, Ear Infections, Allergy, Flu Symptoms, Sore Throat, Migraine, Conjunctivitis, Rough Days, and Stress.
Ear Candles - What is the Truth?
I hope by now that you have heard about those crazy, wacky things called Ear Candles … and, boy have they caused quite the commotion! In this blog, I am going to review and examine the debate surrounding ear candles, prove what the legal status of ear candles are in the USA, clarify exactly what ear candles do and do not do and I am going to share with you why and how to use ear candles. Of course, in the end it is up to you to decide for yourself about ear candles.
I am Doc Harmony and for the last 26 years, I have dedicated my professional, and a lot of my personal life, to Ear Candles. Why? In 1992, my son was very ill with ear infections for about 1 year. After being prescribed another batch of antibiotics, he began vomiting up the medicine. I had had enough. At this time, I went to Dr. Berryhill (our family Naturopath since I was 16) and he introduced me to ear candles. Of course, I thought this was a hoax but at this point in life, I had no other options. I wanted my son to be healthy! So I used 4 ear candles on my son and he has not had another ear infection to this day. Simultaneously, Dr. Berryhill called on me numerous times to encourage me to make and sell ear candles. I took his advice and thus began Harmony Cone Ear Candles.
Life was good, handcrafting and selling ear candles, raising my family, working and living together sustainably upon the land. I birthed 2 babies at home, became vigilant about natural health, and was homeschooling all three children. I went back to school and obtained my Masters in the Science of Natural Health. The company was successfully expanding and this allowed me to have the opportunity to help single mothers and other homeschooling families create their own microeconomic communities by handcrafting ear candles at home with our special technique and, of course, love.
In 2006, I began writing my Dissertation on Ear Candles, expecting this to be an easy paper to write (since I thought I knew everything about ear candles!). But I discovered that I had a lot more to learn about ear candles when when I came across Dr. Seely, a renowned doctor at Spokane Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic, who orchestrated the now famous survey of 122 otolaryngologists in the USA and their observations about ear candles. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8849790 Needless to say, I was dumbfounded because I was like everyone else when he discovered that there was “no removal of cerumen from the external auditory canal" … What! Ear candles do NOT pull wax out of the ear?
I was confused as I had witnessed many people use my ear candles for years with great success for a variety of reasons. So I became committed to discover what ear candles were actually doing by writing my dissertation on ear candles. Thus began a very lonely campaign with my team to educate the retailers and consumers about ear candles.
During the last 26 years, my team and I, have exhibited our ear candles at hundreds of natural health, massage, chiropractic, natural professional tradeshows with tens of thousands of visitors attending. We have worked tirelessly to educate and share the truth about ear candles with retailers and consumers across the world. We have exhibited as far north as Sweden and as far south as Argentina, Brazil and Australia.
I have probably candled more ears than anyone in the world, considering that at every tradeshow, I candled one ear every 15 minutes. (I wish I had documented all of them for the Guinness Book of World Records!) I know I have exhibited in at least 120 tradeshows. Each tradeshow is at least 22 hours long. 22 hours x 4 ears is 88 ears and ear candles. That equals at least 10,560 ears candled by me personally. I am confident that the number is higher considering family, friends, and store demonstrations. I believe that the number is closer to 15,000 plus. There were NEVER any injuries and 99% enjoyed the experience.
This is why, when the FDA sent 16 warning letters about ear candles to vendor, manufacturers and retailers and it included us, I was shocked! We were not claiming to pull wax out of the ear. We were confused and scared. However, everyone at Harmony Cone Ear Candles decided to lead the way with research, funds and a commitment to Personal Freedom and sue the FDA for Constitutional Violations. We asked other manufacturers that had also received warning letters from the FDA to participate but we were the ONLY manufacturer to stand up against the FDA and eventually, stop them from outlawing the sale of ear candles. (Note: We did have a bit of financial support from Regal Labs and Becks Natural.)
Consider, we had made every single ear candle by hand and used them for 26 years regularly with no issues amongst friends, family and associates. We also have a 3-step process to ensure that they are handcrafted properly.
We could not help but wonder, why is the FDA including us?
We are NOT just selling ear candles, we are in the trenches … educating …
Mostly everyone that uses ear candles for the right reasons know that they are relaxing. This is why I am writing this … I want to share our story about Harmony's Ear Candles and how facetiously the FDA has tried to have them removed.
NOTE TO EARTH CLINIC TEAM: I WOULD LIKE TO SEND YOU THE REST OF THE INFORMATION BUT IT IS ABOUT 30 SOMETHING PAGES AND I AM NOT SURE IT WOULD FIT HERE. I CAN ALSO MAKE THE INFO NEUTRAL ... BUT I AM HARMONY SO I AM NOT SURE HOW I COULD/WOULD CHANGE THAT BIT OF INFORMATION. PLEASE CHECK OUT MY WEBSITE: www.healthyenergyamazinglife.com ... ONLY BITS AND PIECES OF THIS COMPLETE STORY IS UP YET. IT SHOULD BE GOING UP NEXT WEEK.
EC: Hello Doc Harmony,
Earth Clinic readers would be interested in learning some of the testimonials from ear candles, but probably not 30 pages of it (which should stay copyrighted on your site anyway)! We've had quite a bit of feedback over the years that ear cones do NOT pull out ear wax! We'd love to read what you have learned over 26 years of use. Thank you!
Hydrogen Peroxide, Warmed Oil
Okay I wanted to comment on this because I had once used Marine ear to try to clean my ears. I will never ever go back to q-tips ever again (and I don't use them on my children). Here is my story--I have suffered from chronic ear wax, but never able to fully get it out. I attempted originally with Hydrogen Peroxide by itself and it never worked. I tried Marine ear at the store--nothing worked. After reading this page, I decided to try the hydrogen peroxide the way that was mentioned. Let me tell you, it worked with getting a little bit out of the ear, but my right ear was highly clogged and began ringing and tons of pressure (felt like a balloon was in there). I could not hear properly and figured it would right itself in the morning.
I woke up the next morning only to suffer the same results--I was not going to give up though. I did some reseach and found that Olive Oil softens the wax and along side that, I figured the bulb that I had was not pressure enough to push the wax out. I went out and got Olive Oil and a new bulb (this was actually a baby mucus cleaner). I put the olive oil in--2-3 drops and waited about five minutes. Then I went on with the hydrogen peroxide. Every 2-3 minutes I would put another drop in of peroxide and did this for about 15 minutes. I then went to the sink, made a bowl of warm water and tilted my head and position the bulb to help push the wax out. I had to do this three times (oil, peroxide, syringe) before the syringe blew the wax out. It was such a relief!!
I did this with my other ear (because now that my right ear was clear, I could offically tell it was clogged) and it blew old wax out that was black!! I was amazed. Therefore, if hydrogen peroxide alone will not work for you, get some olive oil to soften the wax because it is too hard for the hydrogen peroxide to break down.
Hi, got too busy to post results: husband took out cotton after 20 minutes not overnight, said he didn't hear me (ha ha).
Good results on bot sides, tho. Big dark wax piece out on 1 side, the rest allwet sand-y like. He can hear better now! He has hearing loss, mild, from untreated earaches when a child. And, the omega3s we used are fishoil derived, so there's a slight odor, but that is gone soon.
I'm impressed, especially we were using some expensive homeopathics with slight results.
Hydrogen Peroxide, Warmed Oil
I had impacted ear wax for the first time ever. I came upon your site 'by accident' (a happy one, thank you) three days ago after rejecting medical syringing, medical suction and after the prescribed ear-drop medication inflamed my ear. This morning I can hear, the wax is gone and I am very excited to have achieved this by myself - and with your help.
I read all of your entries and began with the most intensive - warmed H2O2 for 50minutes, then 30 then 20 throughout one day followed each time by warm water rinsing . While this did dislodge some flaked material it seemed so little and there was no change in symptomology. I guessed that either I had a larger mass and/or it had become stuck near or on the eardrum. I saw that some of you had recommended the use of warmed oil. So I ended the day by proceeding the H2O2 'treatment' with warm oil for five minutes then drained, and a 20min H2O2 session, rinsed, then again applied warm oil 25 min. Overnight I applied oil and a cotton wool 'plug' to keep it in. This morning I repeated the process and when it came to rinsing after the H2O2 a substantial amount of material came out and I could hear. I did apply some more oil and intend to repeat this process again this evening. If all is well then I shall continue with this remedy on a once a week rota as a preventative. My husband, who has had some awful syringe experiences now intends to use this method too. Thank you so much everyone for your contributions.
This worked best for me: Filled ear up with warmed Olive Oil. Laid down to let it do its job, about 20 minutes. Irrigated with warm Hydrogen Peroxide (H202). Since I had the type of earwax that is a film and sticks to the eardrum it is very stubborn. So I used my water pick to irrigate, very carefully so as not to damage the eardrum, but to get behind the wax to move it (filled up the receptacle with warm peroxide and water, about 2 cups). I could feel the H202 move the wax ever so slightly. Then I took a plastic scoop from Clininere Ear Cleaners to pull it out. This saved me a trip to urgent care. Previously I visited a hospital, who in ER told me to go to an ENT, I visited urgent care, who had to have someone show them how to remove wax, an ended up not being able to do it, and then finally I visited a Naturopath who had it out in 10 minutes. I was dreading spending a week going through this again. So appreciative of this site. Thank you.
For ear wax: warm a tea spoon in a cup of hot water, pour olive oil on, lay on your side, and get some 1 to drizzle the olve oil in your ear. MAKE SURE THE SPOON DOES NOT TOUCH YOUR EAR AND THE OIL IS WARM. Lay for a few minutes , then turn over and repeat in other ear. You can also put cotton wool in your ear's and leave it for a few hour's if needed. Be carefull not to push the cotton wool too far into your ear channel, when finish just tilt your head, an let the oil drain. You may have to reapeat this a few time's, but have patience, it works. Love Andrea c x x x x x
Bobby Pins for Ear Wax: I once had a nun in school who said "don't put anything in your ear smaller than your elbow". Good advice.
I have had heavy earwax buildup all of my life. I do a monthly peroxide drop treatment that works wonders. I was career army so I also took Murine ear drops to the field with me. Both break up the ear wax and allow it to naturally work its way out of the ear canal to where you can swab it up with a Q-tip. Far better than mining with a bobby pin.
I have been sticking cotton swabs into my ears all my life and have not put a hole in my head. There is only ever earwax toward the ear opening. But if you fluff the end of the swab and be very careful you will find that the fluff on the end noticibly contacts the drum with a scratchy sound. So you can tell how far it is safe to insert the swab. This is more difficult if the inside of the ear is swollen, in which case it hurts before the swab ever gets to the drum. But peroxide works well for the itch the swab can't reach. First they take away the merry-go-round, then the cotton swab... What is next? Pit bulls? Shaving?
I had such a huge earwax builup that eventually I couldn't hear which made me (unwillingly!) go to ENT specialist. He did not recommend using hydr.peroxide (too harsh) or Q-tips (increase the production or earwax)- What I'm using for prevention are oils (mineral, baby, even olive)- I just put few drops in each ear twice a week)- to soften wax so it can be dealt with by the body (ear canal is supposed to be self-cleaning after all). I do not recommend ear candles-they push wax deeper and compact it. Unfortunately that's what they did for me.
I also recommend the use of olive oil. I've used hydrogen peroxide for years, but I had a buildup of wax recently and the peroxide just wasn't doing the job. Mineral oil makes my inner ear itch.
After searching the web I found a site that mentioned the use of olive oil. You place a few drops in your ear each day with an eye dropper while you're laying down with your head turned to the side. Let the olive oil soak in for a while. I waited about 20 or 30 minutes. On the 3rd or 4th day you can try gently spraying warm water into the ear with a syringe, but this may not even be necessary. It worked very well for me. My hearing came back in that ear within about 24 hours.
"Candling" to remove ear wax is BS, my husband had it done and brought home his used "candle" to show me all the wax that came out, gross! But he also brought home an unused "candle" we burned it without putting it in his ear and it looked exactly like the one that supposedly removed the wax, just another useless treatment to get your money!
If you want to know if it really removes the wax from your ears, buy an otoscope. They are cheap, and easily found on Amazon. You can look at your ear canal all the way down to the tympanic membrane before and after a treatment and see the results. Beyond that, you can buy ear candles at health food stores. Why would you pay someone to do it, then complain? DIY, and get your own supplies is my suggestion.
I knew someone whom did it and was satisfied with results, if I am not mistaken it is ear wax at the end, because she was amazed at how much came out.
I was not to convinced on putting something lit near my ear so I never tried it, but I do the hydrogen peroxide and like the results. I lay on my side and pour in my ear canal, wait 10 min and pour it out on a towel and then clean your ear out, but make sure you dont push the wax back in. My boyfriend was having trouble hearing out his ears, I did it to him and now no problem.
I read, thats what some doctors do to patients when there is infection in the ear!
WARNING: I had good results many times, as did many of my friends; but once we had a VERY DANGEROUS experience so I will never do it or recommend it again. I assume it was because of an inferior brand of candle or manufactirer defect. To make a long story short, I stopped the procedure just as roilling HOT WAX melted down the cone into a friends ear! Fortunately I was watching very closely because the candle was not the brand I was accustomed to; this one was more flimsy and not made of sturdy cloth; and it burned hotter & faster; too fast for my comfort and obviulsy so fast it melted the wax coating enough to drip down the come... Very, very dangerous... and could instantly have rendered my friend deaf and/or disfugured had I not stopped immediately!
BEWARE! Having shared this treatment with many folks before the above incident, I noticed that most people do not follow the directions and they burn away too much of the cone before removing it from the ear, which is also very, very dangerous!
For everyones sake it's much safer to use the Hydrogen peroxide treatment (but not if you have a reptured eardrum or other ear problems! )
For ear wax, I have used a base of olive oil...warmed...let sit for a few hrs.......put cotton in it and then flush out....Works for me! Good Luck!
Last year I went to a herbal store and had ear candling done.Very simple procedure. I immediately had improved hearing over the course of 3 days.( I could hear a fly take a piss). Sinuses opened up and increased my tasted buds. Not to mention it indeed pulled a blocked wax build up problem I had had for years. I was so impressed I bought some ear candles myself and use them on my 9 year old daughter, whom also had a build up of wax in her ears. Take Note: Ear candling is not used with real candles, it is a hollow cone made of pure bees wax. Do not use cones made with some other materials that are on the market. After ear candling place cotton balls in ears for at least 24 hours, Keep ears secured with cotton or ear plugs pending your work environment, if dusty for at least 2 days. Ears are very sensitive and needs to have time to rest.
How I used it:(never perform this on yourself)
2 ear cones
1 large bowl of water
2 matches or a lighter
1 pair of scissors
1 hot water bottle or heating pad
1 ball of cotton
Place heat on ear your going to do for 5 min. It loosens up the wax. Lay on your side(using a pillow under your head). Exposed ear facing up. Place 1 ear cone in the opening of the ear slightly tilted, Light the top part of the cone with a match. Not to worry bees wax does not melt, it evaporates as it burns. place the match in the bowl of water. At this time you will hear crackling camp fire noises. As the smoke rises it pulls wax out of the ears. when It burns 1/2 way down remove from ear. Take scissors and and cut off the burning part into the water. Inside the cone will be wax and yellow dust. If you see yellow dust it comes from moisture in the ear. Clean out the wax/dust in the cone with a long small stick and repeat the process again w/ remaining cone in the same ear. Then repeat the whole process on the other ear.
the old fashioned bobby pin is a good tool for removing ear wax. use the rounded end inside the ear. used 100 years in my family with safe results.
Firstly, I just want to say, NEVER USE Q-Tips. You know the old saying, never stick anything smaller than your elbow in your ear. That's right!
I am a recovering q-tip addict. I have always had a problem with excessive ear wax build-up and itchy ears. Every other year or so, I'll lose my hearing in one ear, and go to the emergency room to have it cleaned, and irrigated. I began using q-tips to help remedy and control the problem. All I did was push the wax further into my ear, and cause more problems, not too mention, I got addicted to it, because it feels so good. I would sometimes get severe ear aches because of it. I ended up causing chronic itching in my ears, the only way to relieve it, was q-tips, I became dependent. It was a vicious cycle of itchiness deep in the ear canal, and pain from the excessive use of Q-tips. I would insert the q-tip way to far, almost puncturing my ear drum, it was terrible. Finally, gradually, I stopped using them, but then, I ended up with rapid, over excessive wax production, because I over stimulated the ear canal.
I started using hydrogen peroxide which is excellent, and a bulb syringe with WARM water. It has to be warm, because you'll make yourself too dizzy,(Inner ear balance, etc) if the temperature is too cold compared to the ear canal. Also use purified water, (Not Tap water)with a small amount of peroxide when you irrigate. If you don't you might end up with an ear infection(I did, one time). Sometimes, I put Castor oil in there, when it feels too dry. Castor oil is a wonderfully healing and lubricating oil. Garlic Oil cured my ear infections, and oregano oil, (MUST be diluted with a carrier oil or it will burn, and be intolerable.) Just apply to the very outside of your ear opening. Needless to say, this summer has been a real battle with my ears. Having your ear canal blocked is the most annoying feeling ever! You feel off balance. Your ears are very important in your sense of balance and equilibrium.
I see my post from 2008. Yes, earwax has been my problem for several years...Yesterday evening I used Q-tips soaked with mullein/garlic oils to clean my ears and in the morning I felt as if both of my ears were plugged and I could hear Nothing. So scary. For some reason (instinct?) I decided to take a hot bath. I sat in bathtub up to my waist in hot water for 30 min.! Like in sauna my whole body was sweating. And after that bath my hearing was gradually better and now at 5 pm is normal. I'm so happy!
The next day I had to take hot bath again because my ears were plugged - but I could VERY slightly hear - unlike the previous day. At noon I could hear normally! Since then I haven't put anything in my ears.