Preparation of the deceased
Embalming is a process of introducing a disinfectant solution to the body’s internal environment when someone passes away. It slows down changes in the body that occur after death, gives the deceased a more restful appearance and, in some situations, eliminates some visible effects of the cause of death.
How does Embalming work?
The embalming process works by draining the body of blood and other fluids and replacing them with embalming fluid, usually made from a combination of formaldehyde, methanol, phenol, glutaraldehyde, ethanol, water and often dyes, to help make the skin appear rosier.
These chemicals help to preserve the body by destroying bacteria that would otherwise begin the process of breaking down the body and “fixing” cellular proteins so that they can’t feed the bacteria.
There are several reasons for this, and the most common ones are:
- In most situations, embalming allows a family to view their relative for a longer period of time without any natural changes taking place.
- The appearance of the deceased may be restored following the effects of illness or injury.
- A person expressed a wish to be embalmed by a prepaid funeral plan, perhaps.
- The funeral may need to be postponed. In such cases, embalming is recommended.