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Are Incense Sticks harmful to you & your pets?

While incense sticks are widely used in Indian households and religious places for spiritual and aromatic purposes a diabolical question arises whether they pose a threat to human life and pets. Questions have been raised whether agarbathies or incense sticks should carry a toxic or harmful sign on them as we see on cigarette packets. What we need to understand is that, is there anything as harmful incense sticks. How a common when in a market for incense sticks be careful or frightened of health hazards. But the question that needs to be asked is –

Is smoke from Agarbathies good or bad for us?

This question can be answered if we know from which material the incense sticks are made of. The smoke emitting from an organically made incense stick can never be harmful to health but can have a soothing and a refreshing on surroundings and the people using it. But on the other hand, synthetically produced agarbathies do affect the respiratory system and endangers mental health. Firstly, we need to know what are organic and synthetic incense sticks made of.

1. Organic Agarbathies

Agarbatti is a slow-burning stick which was to emit a mild fragrance to clear the atmosphere and also to keep insects away from the human habitat. Traditionally the sticks are made of bamboo coated with natural adhesives made from the bark of trees along with various non -synthetic ingredients which includes charcoal, sawdust of specific wood, a fragrance from sandalwood, cedarwood, cloves, turmeric and lot of other natural fragrances. Customarily the sticks are made of bamboo covered with normal blocks of cement produced using the bark of trees which incorporates charcoal, sawdust from wood, the scent from shoe wood, cedarwood, cloves, turmeric and parcel of other characteristic aromas. Its natural mix of aromas helps eliminate bad odour from the surrounding. Indeed, apart from blessing the aura with a mesmerizing aroma, burning an incense stick has a lot of benefits.

2. Synthetic Agarbathies

Synthetic agarbathies are essentially toxic wherein natural ingredients are not used in the manufacturing process. These agarbathies give out toxic gases such as carbon monoxide and other CFC related gases. Hence choosing an aroma made of natural substances is of vital importance. In the modern world, most incense sticks are made of a combination of essential oils and laboratory-made fragrances which are carcinogenic and toxic. These sticks are also bound together by other chemicals which in-turn become pollutants when released into the air.

Effects of Synthetic Aggarbathies

Usage of synthetic agarbathies can prove quite fatal and this, in turn, would have to be called harmful incense sticks. So, what are the side effects of these harmful incense sticks –

  1. The fumes are toxic to cells
  2. Affects the respiratory tract
  3. Causes lung cancer
  4. Increases symptoms of asthma
  5. Results in contact dermatitis (skin allergies)
  6. Increases the chances of babies getting leukemia if the pregnant mother is regularly around incense.
  7. Creates problems with nervous system leading to memory problems and impaired learning abilities
  8. Causes Headaches
  9. Can cause Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  10. Affects Cardiovascular health by increasing the risk of coronary heart disease.

Effects of traditional and organic incense stick

If synthetic incense sticks are harmful then organic help humans and their pets in the manifold. So, if you are using   organic or traditional incense these are the benefits that you will be rejoicing –

  1. Burning an Incense stick relaxes our body and mind.
  2. Scents from agarbatti help in relieving a headache.
  3. The soothing effect of Incense sticks helps a person to fight against insomnia.
  4. It’s sedative properties aid in relaxing the body and helps give you a good sleep.
  5. Certain scents trigger an immediate response to our brain through our smelling sense.
  6. The smell and smoke coming out of plant resins will dispel out the impure gases accumulated from the closed atmosphere.
  7. Helps in creating a soothing ambience. 8. Makes surrounding bug and insect-free.
  8. Boosts immunity.
  9. Helps in creating a spiritual ambience and devotion.

There are no harmful incense sticks  It is to be understood that there are no harmful incense sticks there are only organic or synthetic agarbathies. The other benefits of burning incense sticks is that it enhances concentration and helps you to focus which helps in stimulating creativity and increases motivation. Incense sticks also have certain health benefits like it helps you to stay away   from infections and also relieves headache. Incense sticks are highly used to get rid of depression as it helps to soothe and compose one’s mind. It also helps in fighting anxiety, depression and insomnia. Hence, incense sticks made from pure and natural materials are completely safe. The oldest source on incense is the Vedas, specifically, the Atharvaveda and the Rigveda. Incense-burning was used both to create pleasing aromas and a medicinal tool. Its use in medicine is considered the first phase of Ayurveda, which uses incense as an approach to healing. Incense-making was thus almost exclusively done by monks. Hence when the oldest and the most pious books in the world prescribe using agarbattis or aroma for self – healing and devotion agarbathies can never be harmful to humans and pets.

To be very frank they are good for your health not harmful. They help you to meditate and relax.


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