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Unsafe Products & Practices

Why is methyl methacrylate unsafe?

Methyl methacrylate (MMA) is an ingredient in some acrylic (artificial) nail products. Health Canada has deemed that cosmetic products containing MMA should not be sold in Canada.

MMA can cause:

  • Headaches and nose and throat irritation.
  • Painful tearing of the nail.
  • Permanent loss of the natural nail if it’s jammed or caught.
  • Allergic skin reactions such as:
    • A red rash
    • Small, oozing blisters
    • Burning
    • Hives

You can avoid exposure to MMA in nail products by reading the labels of chemical bottles. Don’t buy products that aren’t labelled or come with a list of ingredients.

Why is ear candling dangerous?

Ear candling, also known as auricular candling or ear coning, is an alternative therapy.

During the procedure a practitioner inserts the narrow end of a cone covered in beeswax into the ear, and then sets the other end of the cone on fire. The flame supposedly creates a vacuum that sucks ear wax into the tube.

There is no scientific proof ear candling provides medical benefits.

Health Canada has declared ear candling to be not only ineffective, but also dangerous. Ear candling is a fire hazard, and if the burning wax drops into the ear canal it can cause temporary hearing loss and burns.

Visit Health Canada to learn more about the risks of ear candling.



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Revised: Friday May 06 2011

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