Caskets, be they of metal or wood, are sealed so that they protect the body. The sealing will keep the elements, air, and moisture from getting inside the coffin.
Therefore, you can leave the casket open for the moment when people attend the funeral, asking the funeral directors to close it when the service starts. You can also leave it open throughout the funeral service, too- the decision belongs to you!
Many caskets feature a rubber gasket or some kind of sealer, which provides an air-tight seal between the lid and body of the casket.
Once a body is placed in a sealed casket, the gases from decomposing cannot escape anymore. As the pressure increases, the casket becomes like an overblown balloon. However, it's not going to explode like one. But it can spill out unpleasant fluids and gasses inside the casket.
Eventually these too will disintegrate, and after 80 years in that coffin, your bones will crack as the soft collagen inside them deteriorates, leaving nothing but the brittle mineral frame behind. But even that shell won't last forever.
Tradition, Region and Culture
Many people choose a casket that covers their loved one's legs simply because that's how it's usually done in their country.
Rigor mortis and other body processes make the feet larger than usual and often distort the shape. Many times the shoes of the deceases no longer fit. Even with the correct size, the feet are no longer bendable, making it a challenge to place shoes upon them.
Viewing caskets are usually half open because of how they are constructed, according to the Ocean Grove Memorial Home. Most of today's caskets are made to be half open. They cannot lie fully open for viewing.
Most bodies in funeral homes tend to be prepared the same way, even if they're going to be cremated rather than buried. The body is injected with the preservative formaldehyde in a hidden place, either under the armpit or in the groin. The formaldehyde is then pumped into all areas of the body, including the brain.
Coffin flies have that name because they are particularly talented at getting into sealed places holding decaying matter, including coffins. Given the opportunity, they will indeed lay their eggs on corpses, thus providing food for their offspring as they develop into maggots and ultimately adult flies.
If the coffin is sealed in a very wet, heavy clay ground, the body tends to last longer because the air is not getting to the deceased. If the ground is light, dry soil, decomposition is quicker. Generally speaking, a body takes 10 or 15 years to decompose to a skeleton.
Wooden coffins (or caskets) decompose, and often the weight of earth on top of the coffin, or the passage of heavy cemetery maintenance equipment over it, can cause the casket to collapse and the soil above it to settle.
Morticians stuff the throat and nose with cotton and then suture the mouth shut, either using a curved needle and thread to stitch between the jawbone and nasal cavity or using a needle injector machine to accomplish a similar job more quickly.
People may have also buried bodies 6 feet deep to help prevent theft. There was also concern that animals might disturb graves. Burying a body 6 feet deep may have been a way to stop animals from smelling the decomposing bodies. A body buried 6 feet deep would also be safe from accidental disturbances like plowing.
When someone dies, they don't feel things anymore, so they don't feel any pain at all.” If they ask what cremation means, you can explain that they are put in a very warm room where their body is turned into soft ashes—and again, emphasize that it is a peaceful, painless process.
If you have an adult with you at the funeral home, it is ok to touch a dead body, and you will not get in trouble. You are naturally curious, and sometimes when you see and touch a dead body it helps you answer your questions. Remember to be gentle and have an adult help you.
Carrying a coffin with the feet first helps keep it balanced and also means the deceased is being handled with great care. The funeral director will provide instructions on how to take the coffin.
Coffins get tapered to conform to the shape of a human form. A coffin also has a removable lid while caskets have lids with hinges. Coffins are usually made out of wood and lined with cloth interiors. Unlike caskets, they do not have rails that make transportation easier.
In most cases, people are cremated in either a sheet or the clothing they are wearing upon arrival to the crematory. However, most Direct Cremation providers give you and your family the option to fully dress your loved one prior to Direct Cremation.
Does the body sit up during cremation? Yes, this can happen. Due to the heat and the muscle tissue, the body can move as the body is broken down, although this does happen inside the coffin, so it won't be visible.
Most Christians tend to bury their dead facing east. This is because they believe in the second coming of Christ and scripture teaches that he will come from the east. In this manner, they place their dead in a position so they can meet Christ face-to-face during his second coming.
Panel opinion. Health and safety at work legislation does not stop undertakers enclosing shoes in coffins. Depending upon whether the deceased is to be buried or cremated after the funeral, there may be other reasons for not allowing shoes but this should have been explained properly to the enquirer.
How Long Does an Embalmed Body Last? Some people think that embalming completely stops the decay of the body, but this isn't true. If you plan on having an open-casket funeral, then you should not leave the embalmed body out for more than a week. Otherwise, the embalmed body can last two more weeks.
During a wake or open-casket visitation, only the “head section” (the left side of the casket in the photo above) is opened for viewing, revealing the upper half of the deceased's body. Both sections of the casket's lid open, however, to facilitate placement of the body within by funeral service professionals.