Posts Tagged ‘scented candles’

Why am I sneezing during Christmas?

We look forward to the holidays for so many reasons: the smell of a Christmas tree, a warm, cozy fire and delicious food to name a few.

For some allergy sufferers, these aromatic symbols of the season can actually make you say “ahchoo” instead of “Ho, Ho, Ho.”

  • According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, many people experience sniffling,
    Christmas tree allergies, mold, conifer trees, fragrance allergies, sniffles, sneezing

    Mold spores may be the other “gifts” found under your Christmas tree.

    itchy eyes and nose, and shortness of breath due to a Christmas tree allergy. That’s because some conifer trees carry mold spores that trigger allergic reactions or even asthma. Experts recommend putting the tree in the garage or an enclosed porch for several days until it dries. Give it a good shake outside before bringing it in to decorate.

  • Some will artificial sprays and candles to enhance holiday fragrances. But those strong smells can also trigger sneezing and sniffles so you might want to tone them down a little, especially if your holiday guests seem uncomfortable.
  • Many people may not realize that smoke from a fireplace or wood-burning stove is air pollution. The tiny smoke particles which are inhaled may cause coughing and congestion and can even affect your lungs.
  • Delicious holiday meals may be filled with certain foods that trigger allergies. Because a person may react with sniffles, sneezing and coughing after eating a meal, they may not realize they have food allergies.

Using an herbal-enhanced nasal spray before you are potentially exposed to the airborne irritants at a holiday party will even help protect your sinuses by moisturizing passages so that you can focus on holiday cheer instead of holiday achoo. If symptoms persist, consider seeking help from a medical professional.

 

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Could your favorite scented candle make you sick?

There’s something about a crisp fall day that inspires some to light a candle and fill the room with scents of pumpkin spice, apple cider and evergreen.

While a pleasant sensory experience, some may soon find themselves sneezing.

It would be nice to think a pumpkin pie was melted and shaped into a pillar of wax that leaves you with a warm, happy feeling once lit. But the truth is many scented candles are filled with chemicals and metals that create the good smells.

Medical practitioners are identifying more patients who have fragrance allergies or sensitivities that lead to discomfort.

allergy, fragrance, scented candles

Scented candles may smell good but the fragrances may cause allergy symptoms.

“Being near a burning, scented candle can cause allergic reactions such as sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes and even headaches,” said Ed Neuzil, ARNP, PhD and owner of the Allergy, Sinus and Asthma Family Health Center in Lady Lake, Florida. “In extreme cases, some people exhibit breathing difficulties and wheezing. Additionally, some people are sensitive to the soot released from the flame.”

Experts suspect that fragrance allergies are becoming more prominent because fragrances are more prevalent in products such as shampoos, lotions, cleaning supplies and cosmetics. They recommend the following tips to minimize candle soot pollution:

  • Because many scented and slow burning candles may contain metals, consumers should look to see if the core of the wick is shiny metal. If you see metal, do not burn, or check with the manufacturer.
  • When you do burn candles, keep the wicks cut short to one-quarter of an inch. A longer wick causes a larger flame and thus more soot.
  • Do not shake or tip candles because the candle can smoke and send soot into the air to land on walls, carpets and furniture.
  • Keep candles in places away from children and pets. Besides fire hazard, small children and animals may accidentally disturb a candle, causing it to smoke and release soot.
  • Refrain from burning scented or slow-burning candles that have additives. Look for candles, such as beeswax, that do not contain high levels of pollutants.