Vanilla, chocolate, apple and cinnamon are the scents of various nice smelling candles or air fresheners. And yes, with just a simple strike of a match you can create a calming environment, add to the holiday ambiance, or spread the satisfying and scrumptious smell of baked goods. I really think that we can all agree on one thing – there is simply no day that the soft glow and yummy scent of a candle can’t soothe, right? But, as it turns out, those sweet candle aromas that we enjoy so much – may be masking some terrible dangers. Just take a look at the article below and find out more about this.
This story was sent by one of our readers. This is how the story goes – well, Meghan Budden enjoys burning candles in her Hoboken apartment, especially during the holidays. One morning, she lit two large fragrant candles and went about her day as usual.
Note: she shared this story in an interview:
“I didn’t think anything of it, I had them burning probably six or seven hours.”
And yes, just like most of us, the thought of burning candles simply didn’t scared Meghan. That is until the following day, when she noticed black spots on the inside of her nose. Of course this discovery was quite alarming, but not as concerning and horrifying as what Meghan saw when she picked up her infant. This young mother explained to the local reporter. She said that she picked up the baby to feed him and noticed that the inside of his nostril – it was all black. Well yes, and right after making this shocking discovery, Meghan suctioned her child’s nose and attempted to rinse it with saline. Shockingly, this picture was snapped AFTER Meghan had already cleaned her baby’s nostrils. She then picked up one of the candles that had been burning in order to read the label – and immediately made the frightening connection. Meghan Budden never realized something so innocent would put her family’s health at risk.
According to the experts, the real truth is that when we breathe in the delicious and delightful aromas that candles give off, we could also be inhaling extremely dangerous chemicals and toxins as well. Does the name paraffin ring any bell? Well, according to the experts, paraffin, a petroleum waste product, is used to make paraffin wax – which is found in many candles. When burned, the toxins that are released from these candles are considered to be as dangerous as the toxins associated with second-hand smoke. An even scarier thought – these toxic components are the same found in the fumes of diesel fuel. Artificial scents are most often used to create the “aroma” part of a candle, which also causes the release of additional chemicals during the burning process.
And, unfortunately, this doesn’t stop there – a candle’s wick can be dangerous too! Yes, you got that right! And, back in the day, wicks were made with lead, which as we now know is extremely toxic and dangerous. However, they finally banned lead-made wicks in 2003 because of the variety of associated health problems. Green American has a quick and simple “lead test” if you are at all concerned about the candles in your home.
Note: the experts say that there are a few other things you can do to ensure “candle safety” in your home: keep your wick trimmed to 1/8th of an inch; avoid burning candles in a breezy area which can cause a billowy flame; only burn for the recommended amount of time (usually marked on the label), and be sure to extinguish candles immediately if you notice soot markings. Already dreading the “pumpkin/cinnamon candle withdrawals?” Don’t fret JUST yet – there are most definitely some wonderful, natural, safe, non-toxic alternatives out there!
Many experts say that you should try the homemade potpourri comprised of baked apple and orange slices, cloves, and cinnamon sticks. And yes, Julie Blanner has the scenty scoop. Or if you prefer a room spray, then you can try the pumpkin spice all natural room spray recipe – guaranteed to have you craving a big piece of pumpkin pie with whip cream! Or if you just can’t do without the “warmness” of a candle filling the air, maybe a simmering orange, clove, and cinnamon potpourri in the slow cooker would interest you? No flame, no harsh chemicals, no danger – the Novice Chef has the soul-warming, smelly secrets.
Note: and, ladies and gentlemen, if you do choose to stick to your candle-burning ways (and I surely understand), just be sure to check the label for safe, non-toxic ingredients – and burn according to the instructions. As we said, we love our scented candles, but they certainly have the potential to be a terrible danger to our family’s health if we’re not careful. Be aware, be smart, and be sure to look into what’s in your candle. And, as we mentioned before in this article, candles aren’t always full of “sugar, spice, and everything nice” – they can also be filled with toxins, chemicals, and everything artificial. Thanks for reading and don’t forget to hare this story with your candle-loving friends, and spread aroma-awareness! Have a nice day!