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Scented Candles are Harmful to Small Children

Children should not be exposed to any fragrant products.

Scented candles produce numerous toxic pollutants, and are dangerous to a child’s health.

One of the main problems with scented candles is the scent itself. Certain candles may emit numerous types of portenially hazardous chemicals such as benzene and toluene. These chemicals can cause damage to the brain, lung and central nervous system, as well as cause developmental difficulties.

Inhalation of these dangerous pollutants drifting in the air could contribute to the development of health risks like cancer, common allergies and even asthma.

Researchers at the Environmental Protection Agency found that some scented candles can release dangerous chemicals such as benzene and ketones. These chemicals are known carcinogens that can pose serious long-term health risks. The risks are particularly high in heavy scented candles. The release of these chemicals inhaled over time can be very detrimental, especially to an infant’s developing lungs.

In addition scented candles clog up the air in your home, causing the inhalation of dust and fungal spores. Researchers at San Diego State University investigated various factors that contribute to air pollution inside the house. In their investigation, they found that, in addition to cigarette smoke, candles also dangerously polluted the air.

Another serious risk to burning scented candles is the release of fine soot that goes undetected. After long periods of burning, the candle’s wick can slowly emit soot into the air. Scented candles in particular release more soot than unscented candles. This can cause serious problems if inhaled, especially to those with allergies.

All candles, scented and non-scented, do release various chemicals into the circulating air of the indoor environment. Exposure to these chemicals, even in normal situations, can be irritating to the airways, particularly for people with underlying allergies or asthma. These are both common pediatric conditions, affecting roughly 20-30% of all children.

A child’s lungs are still developing and exposure to any posible irritants won’t provide any benefit. Anyone with a family history of allergies or asthma should exercise particular caution for their newborn, as they are at risk for developing these conditions as well.

The risks are particularly high in heavily scented candles made from synthetic fragrance. The release of these chemicals inhaled over time can be very detrimental, especially to an infant’s developing lungs, possibly triggering asthma attacks and allergies.


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