What is the purpose of embalming?
For many, viewing the body of a loved one who has passed away is an important part of the grieving process. The main purpose of embalming the body is to temporarily delay decomposition so that the body retains its lifelike appearance for several days after death. This gives loved ones time to transport the body or to schedule and hold visitation and funeral services.
Is embalming required?
Whether to have your loved one embalmed is generally a personal decision. However, there are circumstances in which embalming is required, such as when you plan to transport the body to or from certain states or the body is being transported by a common carrier, such as an interstate bus line or commercial aircraft. Additionally, embalming or refrigeration can be required if the body is not buried or cremated within a certain amount of time.
How does it work?
Embalming generally involves draining the fluids from the body and replacing them with a special chemical solution that contains preservatives as well as colorants to help restore a lifelike appearance to the skin. The body is cleaned before and after the process. Once embalming is complete, the body is dressed and prepared for viewing or transport.