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Science Says Burning Sage Can Clean The Air And Improve Your Health

Science Says Burning Sage Can Clean The Air And Improve Your Health

Whether the season is summer, spring, fall or winter, it is a good idea to clean the air in your home regularly to get rid of germs and all the other unhealthy things you don’t want your family to breathe in. One great way of cleaning the air around you is by burning sage. This practice has been around for hundreds of years, but many people have discounted it in the past as an old wive’s tale. However, recent research has proven that you can clear bacteria from the air by burning sage herb.

How Burning Sage Herb Works

Research has proven that burning sage removes a whopping 94% of bacteria in the air. When the researchers tested the air a day later, it was still clean. The best method for this is called “smudging.” You take a bunch of dried sage, twist it into a stick shape, then light one end of the “stick” on fire and then blow it out. The resulting smoke “smudges” the air in the room and the properties in the smoke kill most of the existing bacteria in the air. White sage is preferred and you can find sage burners for burning it.

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Unlike chemical air “purifiers” that only mask the smells in the air, sage is 100% natural and will not cause allergic reactions for people with scent sensitivities. It also smells great! The research found that the smoke needs about an hour to cleanse the air. So make sure you burn enough sage a couple to last that long. Though you can buy ready-made sage sticks, some people prefer to grow their own herbs for this practice. If you have the room to grow your own, try it out.

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The Importance of Clean Air

There are many reasons why people are concerned about the air quality in their homes. The primary reason is health related. Poor air quality can cause:

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  • asthma
  • coughing
  • respiratory infections
  • headaches
  • dizziness
  • fatigue
  • lung cancer
  • heart problems

Don’t panic just yet! The chronic health issues mentioned happen as a result of long term exposure to polluted air. But, some of the health issues you or your family are currently experiencing could be a result of the poor air quality in your home. Burning sage is a cost effective and natural way to clean the air and put your worries to rest.

FAQ’s About Burning Sage

  1. Where can I find a sage stick?
    You should be able to find them at your local natural food store or essential oils store. If both places don’t carry them, the staff should know where you can buy them.
  2. How much dried sage should I have to try this?
    You will need about a fistful of sage to try the smudging method. Think of it as 2 servings of spaghetti and measure it the same way with your hand.
  3. Is it safe for my kids and pets?
    Burning sage herb is safe for both kids and pets. Your pet may not appreciate being in the same room since their sense of smell is much more heightened than ours, but it will not harm them.
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Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

There are many reasons why people might scream – they’re angry, scared, or in pain (or maybe they’re in a metal band!). Some might say that screaming is bad, but here’s why science says it’s good for you.

“For the first time in the history of psychology there is a way to access feelings, hidden away, in a safe way and thus to reduce human suffering. It is, in essence, the first science of psychotherapy.” — Dr. Arthur Janov

Primal Therapy

Dr. Arthur Janov invented Primal Therapy in the late 1960’s. It is a practice that allows the patient to face their repressed emotions from past trauma head on and let those emotions go. This treatment is intended to cure any mental illness the patient may have that surfaced from this past trauma. In most cases, Primal Therapy has lead Dr. Janov’s patients to scream towards the end of their session, though it was not part of the original procedure. During a group therapy session that was at a standstill, Dr. Janov says that one of his patients, a student he called Danny, told a story that inspired him to implement a technique that he never would have thought of on his own.

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How it Started

“During a lull in our group therapy session, he told us a story about a man named Ortiz who was currently doing an act on the London stage in which he paraded around in diapers drinking bottles of milk. Throughout his number, Ortiz is shouting, ‘Mommy! Daddy! Mommy! Daddy!’ at the top of his lungs. At the end of his act he vomits. Plastic bags are passed out, and the audience is requested to follow suit.”

It doesn’t end there, though. Dr. Janov said that his patient was quite fascinated with that story, and that alone moved him to suggest something even he believed to be a little elementary.

“I asked him to call out, ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ Danny refused, saying that he couldn’t see the sense in such a childish act, and frankly, neither could I. But I persisted, and finally, he gave in. As he began, he became noticeably upset. Suddenly he was writhing on the floor in agony. His breathing was rapid, spasmodic. ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ came out of his mouth almost involuntarily in loud screeches. He appeared to be in a coma or hypnotic state. The writhing gave way to small convulsions, and finally, he released a piercing, deathlike scream that rattled the walls of my office. The entire episode lasted only a few minutes, and neither Danny nor I had any idea what had happened. All he could say afterward was: ‘I made it! I don’t know what, but I can feel.’”

Delving deeper

Dr. Janov says he was baffled for months, but then he decided to experiment with another patient with the same method, which lead to a similar result as before. The patient started out calling “Mommy! Daddy!” then experienced convulsions, heavy breathing, and then eventually screamed. After the session, Dr. Janov says his patient was transformed and became “virtually another human being. He became alert… he seemed to understand himself.”

Although the initial intention of this particular practice wasn’t to get the patient to scream, more than once did his Primal Therapy sessions end with the patient screaming and feeling lighter, revived, and relieved of stresses that were holding them down in life.

Some Methods To Practice Screaming

If you want to try it out for yourself, keep reading!

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  • Step 1: Be Alone — Be alone. If you live in a place that you can’t be alone, it might be a good idea to talk to your family or roommates and explain to them what you’re about to do and make sure they’re okay with it. If you’re good to go, move on to step 2.
  • Step 2: Lie Down — Lie down on a yoga mat on your back and place a pillow underneath your head. If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can use a rug or even a soft blanket.
  • Step 3: Think — Think of things that have hurt you or made you angry. It can be anything from your childhood or even something that happened recently to make yourself cry, if you’re not already crying or upset. You could even scream “Mommy! Daddy!” just like Dr. Janov’s patients did to get yourself started.
  • Step 4: Scream — Don’t hold anything back; cry and scream as loud as you can. You can also pound your fists on the ground, or just lie there and scream at the top of your lungs.

After this, you should return your breathing to a normal and steady pace. You should feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted off of you. If not, you can also try these other methods.

Scream Sing

Scream singing” is referring to what a lot of lead singers in metal or screamo bands will do. I’ve tried it and although I wasn’t very good at it, it was fun and definitely relieved me of any stress I was feeling from before. It usually ends up sounding like a really loud grunt, but nonetheless, it’s considered screaming.

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  • Step 1 — Bear down and make a grunting sound.
  • Step 2 — Hiss like a snake and make sure to do this from your diaphragm (your stomach) for as long as you can.
  • Step 3 — Breathe and push your stomach out for more air when you are belting notes, kind of like you would if you were singing.
  • Step 4 — Try different ways to let out air to control how long the note will last, just make sure not to let out too much air.
  • Step 5 — Distort your voice by pushing air out from your throat, just be careful not to strain yourself.
  • Step 6 — Play around with the pitch of your screams and how wide your mouth is open – the wider your mouth is open, the higher the screams will sound. The narrower or rounder your mouth is (and most likely shaped like an “o”), the lower the screams will sound.
  • Step 7 — Start screaming to metal music. If you’re not a huge metal fan, it’s okay. You don’t have to use this method if you don’t want to.

If you want a more thorough walkthrough of how to scream sing, here’s a good video tutorial. If this method is too strenuous on your vocal chords, stop. Also, make sure to stay hydrated when scream singing and drink lots of water.

Scream into a pillow

Grab a pillow and scream into it. This method is probably the fastest and easiest way to practice screaming. Just make sure to come up for air.

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Always remember to make sure that you’re not going to disturb anyone while practicing any of these methods of screaming. And with that, happy screaming!

Featured photo credit: Sharon Mollerus via flickr.com

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