A New York Instances reader asks: “The place does a candle go when it burns, anyway? Is it wholesome to be inhaling melted candle particles? How involved ought to I be?” Randall Munroe of XKCD fame breaks down the science in his illustrated “Good Query” column. From the New York Times:
Wax is fabricated from hydrogen and carbon. When a candle burns, the hydrogen and carbon from the wax mix with the oxygen within the air to change into carbon dioxide and water vapor. Many of the matter within the candle finally ends up as these two gases[…]
As a candle burns, the CO₂ and water vapor it produces will cool and blend into the air within the room, turning into indistinguishable from every other molecule of CO₂ or water. Over the following few hours, because the air in your room is exchanged with the air outdoor, the molecules out of your candle will escape the room and start to disperse into the environment. After a few 12 months, atoms out of your candle may have unfold utterly across the globe.
“Where Does a Candle Go When It Burns?” (New York Instances)