Common Misconceptions about the Funeral Industry

The funeral industry is regularly painted in a bad light due to its nature and some view it as predatory and enabling exploitation of people in vulnerable states. However, it also renders a valuable service to society, allowing families to process their grief without worrying about funeral plans and arrangements. This makes it rife with misinformation which spread through popular culture which portray funeral services industry in a negative light. This article will discuss several popularly held misconceptions about the industry. Note that any legislation mentioned may not be the same in every state.

A funeral director is always required

There is no legal requirement to use a funeral director and it is perfectly acceptable to plan a funeral yourself and is commonly done in many cultures. Funeral services or directors make the process hassle free by taking care of most of the paperwork, embalming and the wake itself. Planning a funeral is exhausting work, and however a funeral director is usually recommended since a grieving family generally would not be in the correct headspace to organise a funeral in just a few days. Funeral directors  farewell Bankstown are trained professionals who are experienced in this field to provide the best service they can.They also provide invaluable practical and emotional advice and enable access to helpful resources. However, this is not required, contrary to popular belief.

Embalming is Required (or Recommended for Public Health)

Embalming involves removing most internal organs of the body, filling it and closing openings such as the mouse and eyes. Chemicals are used to sterilise the body and mask smells. In most places, embalming is not required by law and is almost never required anyway unless the wake is long. Embalming does not preserve the body for extended periods and at most delays decaying process by about a week. Embalming also carries no benefit for public health. There is no risk of contaminating the soil or ground water when comparing embalmed bodies vs. non-embalmed bodies. The chemicals used for embalming are, however, highly toxic and poses a risk to those who perform the operation but with training and equipment, the risk is alleviated.

A viewing is necessary

This is a personal decision and is up to the family of the deceased whether they want to host a viewing of the body. There is absolutely no requirement that the body should be viewed at a funeral for closure or otherwise.

Funerals are expensive

This is another myth that ties into the perceived predatory nature of the funeral industry, implying that they exploit money from grieving families, but funerals are not disproportionately expensive. Funeral Homes take care of almost everything for the price – from embalming to cremation or burial and even the paperwork, which makes it well worth it, and they charge no more than reasonable in most cases. While it is true that funerals costs have gone up over the past years this can be largely attributed to inflation.

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