The Unexpected Truth About Christmas Decorations: Are You Putting Yourself in Danger?

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You might be putting yourself in danger with Christmas decorations.  I love Christmas decorations because they really bring out the holiday spirit.  In anticipation of Christmas and the magic it creates, we cheerfully put out the fragile Christmas decorations, shiny tinsels and set up candles everywhere.

Decorating your  home is one of the time proven ways to create that Christmas spirit.  Just a few candles here and there can already create a better mood.  Unfortunately, unless you go all green for Christmas, some of your Christmas decorations are health hazards.  Let’s take a closer look at some of them.

Health Dangers of Christmas Decorations 

1. Candles.

Burning Candles, especially the scented ones, releases toxic chemicals such as mercury and lead.  Paraffin candles are extra dangerous as they are made from a petroleum based by-product of refined gasoline. By burning paraffin candles, you are releasing carcinogenic toxins into the air.  Most of the paraffin candles contain lead and toxic carcinogens which probably won’t be identified or even put as a warning in the ingredient list as manufacturers are not required to disclose it.  I use beeswax candles (here). They are natural and safe; just look for beeswax candles that have natural honey color (here).

2. Fake Christmas Trees

Artificial Christmas trees can pose some dangers to your health. The plastic parts of fake trees are usually made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride).  PVC contains  phthalates. These are softeners that if used inside can develop  allergies in children.  Phthalates can also interfere with normal hormone production as they resemble the structure of human hormones. 

3. Christmas Lights

Christmas lights contain a significant amount of lead which is  part of the Christmas light wiring.  In order to keep Christmas lights from cracking, lead is used  to stabilize polyvinyl chloride.  Dr. Leo Trasande, a specialist in children’s environmental health at New York’s Mount Sinai School of Medicine, found that “There is no level at which lead exposure is safe. Even at one microgram/deciliter — the lowest level in a person’s blood stream that we can detect — that level has been associated with cognitive impairment in children.” (Read the article here)

You can still decorate and create that Christmas spirit with non-toxic natural things.  Go with real a Christmas tree – nothings beats the smell of it!  Why pollute your home with toxins? 

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