Incense can be used for many different reasons – to encourage relaxation, aid sleep, increase concentration, enhance sensory experiences and more. However, if not used properly, the resulting smoke can pose health risks.
Research has shown that long-term exposure to incense smoke can cause lung inflammation and asthma. Knowing how to mitigate this can help reduce the risk for children and other susceptible adults.
Using incense is a common practice for many people to create a pleasant scent in their home. However, if you use a chemical-based incense product it can be harmful to your health when the inhalants are inhaled. Choosing a natural product such as Utama Spice’s chemical-free incense is much safer and healthier to use.
When incense is used regularly in a closed room with poor ventilation, the resulting smoke can build up to dangerous levels. This particulate matter can clog the airways and reduce your ability to breathe properly.
During inspiration (inhalation), the diaphragm contracts and increases the thoracic volume, decreasing intraalveolar pressure so that air can enter the lungs. During expiration, the elastic recoil of the thoracic cavity decreases the thoracic volume and increases intraalveolar pressure, pushing out the air that has been accumulated in the lungs. This cycle is important for maintaining your respiratory system’s healthy functioning. When this cycle is disrupted due to poor ventilation, it can cause respiratory ailments such as bronchitis and asthma.
Depending on the type of incense you use, it can create thicker or denser smoke. Resin-based incense, like frankincense and myrrh, produce more smoke than herbal incense such as lavender and sage. This thicker smoke can cause your ionization or photoelectric smoke alarm to trigger.
Long-term exposure to incense smoke can contribute to respiratory ailments such as asthma and lung inflammation. It may also increase the risk of cancers of the nose, throat and lungs. The levels of particulate matter, carbon monoxide and formaldehyde in incense smoke can also be harmful to children and unborn babies.
Using natural incense can help you avoid these unhealthy effects. When burning natural incense sticks, you will be exposed to a more natural fragrance with less soot and toxins. Avoiding incense smoking altogether and using natural air fresheners that are free of “fragrance oil” is another way to reduce your exposure to incense-related pollutants. You can also open windows and doors to improve the airflow in your home.
When incense is burned, it releases smoke into the air. This smoke contains a complex mixture of gases and particulates. When inhaled, these pollutants can cause respiratory dysfunction.
The temperature of the smoke also plays a role. Inhaling hot smoke can irritate the mucous membranes of the nose, throat and sinuses, and can cause coughing and bronchial spasms. In addition, smoldering incense may produce irritating aldehydes such as acrolein and formaldehyde.
If you have existing lung problems, it’s best to avoid inhaling any type of smoke. It’s also best to burn incense sparingly, especially if you use it regularly. If you do burn incense, it’s a good idea to keep the incense burning in one room of your home. Keeping a separate area just for incense will decrease the amount of indoor air pollution created by the smoke. This will also help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses such as COVID-19.
Burning incense is an ancient tradition and has been used for many different purposes – to unwind, create a calming atmosphere or for spiritual, religious or meditation reasons. It can also be used to eliminate unpleasant odors or cover up cooking or smoking smells. In addition, certain botanical incense ingredients have antiseptic and antibacterial properties and can even help to purify the air.
However, inhaling smoke from burning incense is not good for us, just like it would be if we inhaled any other type of pollution. Especially when we use the wrong type of incense with little or no ventilation.
The incense smoke pollutants can irritate the respiratory tract, causing inflammation and irritation. They can also trigger allergies and asthma in sensitive people. Pets and children are often more sensitive to these pollutants than adults. They have a stronger sense of smell and can inhale the smoke easily, leading to respiratory problems. Also, they can be tempted to touch or play with the burning incense sticks, potentially getting burned.