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Baltic Amber Fact Sheet

Baltic Amber Facts

So what is Baltic Amber made of? 
Well it can vary depending on the botanical source. Baltic Amber contains between 3-8% succinic acid believed to form fermentation of the cellulose contained within tree resin. Composition can look like this: carbon 67-87%, hydrogen 8-11%, oxygen 15%  and sulfur 0-0.4%. There are many forums and blogs claiming that Baltic Amber is resin from pine trees however scientific studies have shown this is not the case.



Yes it most definitely can come from the resin of pine trees but it is not limited to that specific variety of tree. In the late 19th century Germans, Swedes and Swiss Scientist also found succinic acid and bornel among other compounds in Amber.

Of more modern study based on Beck and Heuber's study of Baltic Amber scientists now believe Baltic Amber to have its origins in araucarian trees. They don't actually exist today but is closely related to Agathis Australis or the Kauri pine found in  New Zealand. This can somewhat explain recent findings of  amber in Australia although this is not yet commercially available.

Baltic Amber is the resin of the tree this is important to remember as it is not tree sap. The resin is the tree's defence mechanism against disease and bacteria. It also protects the tree against boring insects and storm damage.

What are Amber Teething Necklaces?

Amber Teething Necklaces are made from the fossilized resin of the trees mentioned above. Throughout Europe and parts of Asia Amber Necklaces have been used for centuries to help relived the symptoms of teething as well as other pain and skin related conditions. 

Amber Teething Necklaces get there benefits from the Succinic acid contained with them. When Amber is worn against the skin the heat from our skin releases the succinic acid from the Amber which then passes through our skin and into the bloodstream.

Are they Safe? The most hotly debated question about Amber Teething Necklaces is safety. Built into our Amber Teething Necklaces are the following features. Individually knotted beads mean if the necklace should break you only lose one bead. Our Amber Necklaces also feature plastic screw clasps which when put under pressure like when they are caught on something will release. As well as those our Amber Teething Necklaces are strung on cotton not silk as silk has a much greater breaking strain than cotton.

We recommend Adult Supervision and that children under six months don’t sleep with an Amber Teething Necklace.

 

 

History of Baltic Amber.

The history of Baltic Amber has caused much discussion; here is a brief history of documented Baltic Amber.
It is said that it was first used by Palaelliyhic man in Austria approx. 45000-12000 BC. There is also some signs that the Nesolithic people used it as well with carvings of animals and moon phases shown in some ancient pieces of Baltic Amber. It was also these people that started using it for jewellery and decorative purposes and it was only used by the richer of that society.


Towards the end of the eighth century BC the Greeks were using Baltic Amber for inlay work in there gold and wood. And the Romans started using it approx. 1st century BC.

The Baltic region is home to the largest deposits of Baltic Amber and in particular Lithuania have adopted it as their own.

Baltic Amber has been used down through time by many people from many countries but today the best quality of Baltic Amber is always found in the Baltic Region in Lithuania.




How to test Baltic Amber for Authenticity

There are many ways to test your Baltic Amber to see if it is Authentic. Below we will go through some of the ways 
and the pros and cons of each test.

  

Possible the easiest and best way to test Genuine Baltic Amber is the static electricity test.
So to start places some small pieces of torn tissue onto a flat surface. Rub the Baltic Amber very vigorously on a piece of velvet or wool until it is a little warm then hold it approx. half an inch above the tissue. If the tissue is not attracted to or doesn't stick to the Baltic Amber as above it possibly is not authentic Baltic Amber.


Hot Needle Test

Heat up a needle till the tip red hot and then place the point into the piece of Amber. If the needle goes into the piece easily or leaves a black spot it may not be amber. If the needle goes into the Baltic Amber and leaves a pine or turpentine smell, it is most likely Authentic Baltic Amber.

Baltic Amber Acetone Test

Authentic Baltic Amber is not soluble and acetone should not hurt it. So place one drop of a test piece of amber. If your Baltic Amber is Real you will see no noticeable change in the colour of your Amber.

Saltwater Baltic Amber Test

Dissolve 2 tablespoons of table salt in approx. 8 ounces of water. Remove the amber from any mountings and place it into the water. It should float to show it is Real Baltic Amber. The only problem is for necklaces. You can’t take it off the thread thus this test is not very good for such pieces.

Baltic Amber UV light test

Under a short wave UV light Amber fluoresces a pale shade of blue. So place it under the light, and if it gives off a blue glow it could be amber if it doesn't at all it is most likely not real amber.


The Benefits of Baltic Amber

 


There are many allegations concerning Baltic Amber and its healing abilities some are pure guess work some have some real merit, so let’s have a closer look.

Amber is chemically named Succinite. It contains on average 4-8% succinic acid a natural component of plant and animal tissues. Amber beads have been put on babies for centuries through Europe to help with the pain of teething and to make teeth grow stronger. This is still done today and many parents swear by it.


So what is it good for besides teething? Here we go. 

  • Stimulates the nervous system
  • regulates the work of kidneys and intestines
  • anti-inflammatory and antitoxic agent
  • destroys free radicals and bacteria
  • disinfectant properties
  • rheumatic and asthmatic ailments
  • skin ulcerations and irritations (eczema)
  • bronchial
  • throat
  • thyroid conditions


There is a lot but most of them break down into either analgesic (pain relieving) or electrical corrections. Chinese have been using Amber as well in traditional medicine for ailments such as energy and balance, drawing out negative energy from the body, spine and brain ailments arthritis and headaches. Chinese use seems to break down basically to electrical conditions. This makes sense then, that in today's over the top electrical world that Baltic Amber can help.
Succinic Acid is the answer. It is incredibly important to your body. Used in the Krebs Cycle or the intermediary metabolic process. Also commonly called the Citric Acid Cycle.

What is the Krebs Cycle?


So what exactly does Baltic Amber possess to achieve all this?

 


Simply it is the series of stages that a living cell goes through on the way to produce energy. Enzymes cause each step of this process and are located in the mitochondria. 
Mitochondria are within cells and are purely responsible for energy production. Citric acid is the first product made by this sequence hence the name Citric Acid Cycle. Our bodies use succinic acid as part of this process.

Succinic acid is rarely found in nature except in Baltic Amber even succinic acid in fruits is a thousand times less than that found in Baltic Amber, with most of the succinic acid being found in the outer layer of Baltic Amber. Electrostatic properties are also an essential part of Baltic Amber's healing properties. Succinates most often known as calcium succinate, potassium succinate and sodium succinate are often used in today's medicines. Anti-aging creams often use succinic acid as an inhibitor or agent to stop the loss of potassium ions.

Amber Teething Necklaces - Safety Features


Individually Knotted Beads

With the popularity of Amber Teething Necklaces on the rapid incline it also brings out the detractors saying they are not safe etc.. There are some simple rules when purchasing one of these necklaces and first up is that every single bead on the necklace should be individually knotted. This means that if the necklace should happen to break you would only ever lose one bead not the whole necklace. Necklaces that are not individually knotted should always be avoided.

Cotton not silk threads

We would also recommend only buying Amber Teething Necklaces that are threaded on cotton and not silk. Silk has a much higher breaking strain than cotton and it is important that the necklace isn’t to strong so that if baby does get caught on something either the clasp lets go or the thread breaks.

Plastic Screw Clasps

Another very important safety feature is the clasp for joining the Amber Necklace. It should always be the plastic colour coded clasps never metal or sterling silver. The plastic screw clasp is designed so that if enough pressure is applied to it the thread will pop and pull apart. Also not being metal is important as many babies have allergies to different types of metals.

 

Shorter Lengths

While as adults we like to have longer necklaces this is not a good idea with Amber Teething Necklaces. Amber Necklaces are designed to be worn and not sucked on or chewed on. As such the necklace should be short enough that you baby can’t get any of the beads into their mouth.

 

 

 

 

 

Authenticity

Authenticity certificates have become more important as Baltic Amber has gained more popularity. But as with all things knowing a genuine Authenticity Certificate from a fake is not always easy.

First off there is a growing trend of sellers who are simply self-authenticating there Amber. Printing their own labels and handwriting fake serial numbers on them.

Another claim by one company is that they are the governing body for Baltic Amber worldwide they are fraudsters and are currently under investigation by the ACCC for this conduct.

So how do we know a genuine certificate from a fake. Authenticity Certificates should always come from the manufacturer and bear there stamp. Our certificate is supplied by our manufacturer in Lithuania and they are current members of the Palanga Guild of Master Amber Artisans.
Beware of fake and handwritten certificates.


 

Colours. Why so many and which is best?

Baltic Amber comes in many colours and for many reasons mostly time and the type of tree it  was produced from.

But which colour is best or most effective?

There are many forums and blogs saying that lighter colour Amber Necklaces are more effective than darker colours and there is some truth to the claim but the difference is so minimal it really is not worth sacrificing the look you like.