Eating a candle is not unheard of, despite the fact that it may appear strange and improbable. People occasionally find themselves enticed to swallow candles, oblivious of the possible effects, whether out of curiosity or as a dare. The act of eating a candle can have detrimental effects on one’s health, ranging from gastrointestinal issues to choking dangers.

This article explores the answer to “What Happens If You Eat a Candle?”, highlighting the dangers involved and revealing some surprising facts about the potentially dangerous properties of this seemingly innocent material.

What Happens If You Eat a Candle?

It is crucial to remember that eating candles is quite dangerous for your health. Seek emergency medical help if you or someone you love consumes a candle to ensure the correct diagnosis and treatment.

What Happens If You Eat a Candle?

Depending on the precise chemicals and parts of the candle, eating one might have different effects on your health. Here are a few possible outcomes:

Digestive Problems

 The digestive system may have trouble breaking down a candle’s waxy nature. Consuming a candle may cause gastrointestinal problems including nausea, diarrhea, and stomachaches. The waxy material may be difficult for the body to break down and expel, temporarily upsetting the digestive system.

Choking risks

Candles frequently have a wick encased within the wax, creating a choking risk. When a candle is swallowed whole or is bit into, choking may occur if the wick becomes stuck in the throat or blocks the airway. There is a significant risk involved here, necessitating urgent medical care.


Some candles have chemicals, colors, or perfumes that might be harmful to consume. These compounds have the potential to impair the body’s organs and systems, resulting in poisoning symptoms including disorientation and dizziness or, in more severe situations, organ damage.

Intestinal Blockage

Consuming a significant amount of candles might result in an intestinal blockage, particularly if the candle freezes and hardens in the digestive system. A bezoar is a condition that can be harmful and that needs medical attention to have the obstruction removed.

Burn Risk

Consuming a lighted candle unintentionally can result in burns to the lips, throat, and digestive tract. The flame’s heat can destroy tissue, which can cause discomfort, inflammation, and even an infection.

What Happens If You Eat a Candle

Why do people eat candles?

There are few situations where people could swallow candles, albeit it is neither conventional nor widespread. The justifications might range and could include:


Some people with an eating disorder known as pica experience unusual cravings for things other than food. They may swallow things like candles, clay, paper, or even hair as a result of this disease. Pica is frequently linked to psychiatric issues, developmental problems, or nutrient deficits.

Prank or Dare

People have been known to eat candles as part of pranks or dare in particular social settings. Peer pressure, curiosity, or the desire to partake in attention-seeking activities are frequently the causes of this behavior.

Cultural or Ritual Practises

There may be customs that entail ingesting candles or other wax-based products either symbolically or for ceremonial purposes. These customs frequently have strong roots in certain cultural or religious beliefs.

Sensory Stimulation or Disorder

Some people with sensory processing issues or sensory-seeking tendencies may feel the need to investigate and taste many things, including candles. This behavior, which is motivated by a demand for sensory input, maybe a symptom of their illness.

Digestive System Reactions to Candle Consumption

Consuming candles can cause a variety of responses in the digestive system, which could cause disruptions and pain. The following are some typical digestive system responses linked to eating candles:

Digestion Difficulty

Candles are difficult to digest because of their waxy composition, which presents a problem for the digestive system. The wax may prevent the digestive enzymes and acids from breaking down completely, causing the digestion process to take longer.

GIT Disturbances

Consuming candles may result in gastrointestinal disturbances such as flatulence, stomachaches, bloating, cramps, and stomach pain. The waxy material may cause short-term digestive problems by irritating the lining of the stomach and intestines.

What Happens If You Eat a Candle


Changes in bowel habits might result from the presence of foreign material like candle wax in the digestive tract. As the body makes an effort to get rid of the indigestible material, it may cause loose stools or diarrhea.

Vomiting and Nausea

Eating candles may make you feel sick to your stomach or make you throw up, especially if your body thinks the wax is poisonous or irritable. The body’s natural reaction is to vomit the substance it has just consumed.

Blockage Of Intestine

Consuming a substantial amount of candle wax may result in an intestinal obstruction, often known as a bezoar. Abdominal discomfort, constipation, or vomiting may result from the accumulation of hardened wax in the intestines that obstructs the usual passage of food and waste.

Inability To Absorb Nutrients

 Candle wax can prevent nutrients from meals from being properly absorbed by the digestive system, leading to malnutrition. This may cause insufficient vitamin absorption, which may eventually cause shortages.

Myths Of Eating Candles

Myth 1

Consuming candles has nutritional advantages.

Fact: This is wholly untrue. Candles have no nutritional value and are not meant to be ingested. In reality, because of the possible dangers and difficulties they provide, ingesting candles might be harmful to your health.

Myth 2

Candle wax is safe and doesn’t cause any harm as it travels through the body.

Fact: Candle wax is not meant to be consumed, despite the fact that it is not instantly hazardous. Candles’ waxy structure might make it difficult for the digestive system to break them down and expel them. It may result in obstructions, digestive difficulties, and other health issues.

Myth 3

Consuming candles might aid with hunger control or weight reduction.

Fact: This assertion is unsupported by science. Candle consumption as a weight loss method is not only harmful but also useless. It has nothing to do with long-term weight control and can result in a number of health problems.

Myth 4

Eating candles is a safe and enjoyable challenge or dare.

Fact: Eating candles is not a good idea. It could lead to choking risks, digestive issues, toxic responses, and tissue damage. You run a severe danger to your health and well-being by accepting such challenges or dares.

Myth 5

Eating candles has a religious or cultural significance.

Fact: Although candles may be used in some cultural or religious rituals, candle eating is not one such ritual. Candles should not be consumed because they are primarily intended for lighting or symbolic purposes.

What Happens If You Eat a Candle

Cultural and Historical Perspectives on Candle Consumption

Cultural and historical perspectives on candle consumption provide fascinating insights into how candles are regarded and utilized in various communities. While candles have traditionally been used to provide light, they have also carried symbolic, ceremonial, and even gastronomic importance in some civilizations. Here are a few noteworthy examples:

Religious observances and candlelight vigils

Candles have long been used in religious rituals and spiritual practices. Candle lighting is a custom shared by many religions during vigils and religious celebrations. The sputtering flame is frequently seen as a sign of faith, awe, and the presence of God.

Candle Magic and Rituals

Candles are sometimes employed in esoteric and pagan rituals as implements for magic. Different colored candles are lighted and summoned to evoke certain intents or energies, bring about desired results, or provide a holy environment.

Advent Candles

 An Advent wreath with candles is used throughout the Advent season, which is commemorated according to Christian customs. A particular subject or week leading up to Christmas is symbolized by each candle. The candles are lit to represent the eagerness and planning for the birth of Jesus Christ.


The Feast of the Presentation of Jesus Christ, commonly known as Candlemas, is observed on February 2 in various Christian and some pagan traditions. It commemorates the presentation of Jesus in the temple as well as the cleansing of the Virgin Mary. During this event, candles are blessed before being used in liturgies and processions.

Candle-lit Dinners and Ambiance

In contemporary culture, candles are frequently linked to fostering a romantic or homely atmosphere. For special events or private settings, candlelight meals are common because they create a cozy and inviting ambiance.

How to Handle an Accidental Candle Swallow?

For your safety and well-being, you should act right away if you accidentally swallow a candle. The steps you should take are as follows:

  • Panicking or feeling worried is normal, but it’s important to keep your composure. Making clear judgments or choosing the right course of action might be challenging while you’re panicking.
  • The size of the candle, whether it was lighted or not, and any immediate symptoms or discomfort you may be feeling should all be taken into account while assessing the situation. You will be better able to converse with medical experts after taking this assessment.
  • Contact your local emergency services or visit the closest emergency room right away to seek medical attention. Explain the scenario and provide them specifics about the candle, such as its size, makeup, and whether it was lighted or not. The doctors will assess your health and give you the best care possible.
  • Cooperate with medical specialists and adhere to their directions by heeding their advice. To locate the candle that was ingested and assess any dangers, they could use procedures like X-rays or endoscopies. Depending on your particular condition, they will perform the appropriate medical procedures.
  • Avoid attempting to induce vomiting unless a medical practitioner instructs you to do so. Further issues, such as choking or throat damage, might arise from swallowing a candle whole or attempting to force it out.
  • Be ready to give the medical staff any pertinent details regarding your medical history, allergies, or current problems. They can use this information to make well-informed decisions about your treatment.

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