Can Home Cleaning Affect Your Health?
How can home cleaning affect your health? Well, it’s all listed there on the ingredient label! Check out how home cleaning can affect the health of everyone in your house!
Why do most people clean their homes?
Before we analyze the perils of everyday home cleaning, let us discuss various reasons as to why people clean their home or get it cleaned by professionals and elsewhere? Below mentioned are two main reasons that I can think of:
- Social status: Some individuals get their homes cleaned because they are worried about their social image, and so they usually clean their homes when a friend or relative is visiting.
- Conditioning: Another vital reason for keeping the home clean is to do with their growing years. While growing up, they were taught (by their parents, of course) to clean up the house once or twice a week.
In addition to the mentioned two reasons, we could also add one very important reason why individuals keep their homes clean, i.e. to protect their health. The problem is, we don’t often see the harmful bacteria and fungi building up in our kitchen sink and elsewhere.
Even when the whole house is under one big mess, we have a tendency to overlook its negative impact on our health.
How everyday home cleaning can affect health?
The problem does not lie in the habit of cleaning the home every day, but in the cleaning products that we buy and use for home cleaning. When we buy home cleaning products, we expect these products to clean our homes.
While all these glittery soaps, scents, softeners, detergents, bleaching agents, and cleaners do a fabulous job in keeping our kitchen sink, bathroom and toilet floors, and ovens super clean and sweet-smelling, they leave behind hazardous health impacts on the cleaners and fellow residents of the home.
Of course, cleaning supplies dramatically vary in the type of health dangers they pose; some of these ingredients cause respiratory irritation and watery eyes, while others cause more chronic and long-term effects such as lung cancer.
According to the Washington Toxics Coalition, some of the most dangerous cleaning products usually are oven cleaners and acidic toilet bowl cleaners. Such corrosive chemicals can cause harsh burns on the eyes and skin, and people with asthma or heart problems should avoid using them.
Some ingredients used in the cleaners may actually have low acute toxicity but are responsible for contributing to long-term health effects such as hormonal disruptions. The hormone disruptors can ruin our body’s natural chemical messages. For instance, it can cause decreased sperm counts and hypospadias.
Quick Look at Scientific Findings
(Mentioned here are findings of Environmental Working Group, a Washington-based public advocacy group.)
- Around 53% of cleaning products contain ingredients known to harm the lungs.
- Around 22% of home cleaning products contain chemicals reported to develop asthma in otherwise perfectly healthy individuals.
- Air fresheners contain a typical fragrance mixture that is known to trigger asthma and other kinds of allergies.
- Even fabric softener and drying sheet ingredients may cause asthma or cause irritation in the lungs.
What are the alternatives?
Luckily, there are a few household items that can do a fantastic job in keeping the home clean. Items such as lemon juice, vinegar, and baking soda may, in fact, do a better job in keeping your home cleaner than its toxic counterparts.
In addition to trying home-based ingredients, you can also give a shot to ‘green’ products that genuinely are free from toxic chemicals. There are plenty of companies selling non-toxic cleaners, replacing many chemical-based cleaning products.
You can also research homemade cleaning products as well.
It is best to avoid using chemical-based cleaners as they pose a significant threat to the health of their users.
Some of the manufacturers purposefully don’t mention the name of the ingredients on the packaging, so make sure you remain wise while making a purchase.
Studies are now beginning to provide explanations as to why do we see an increase in unexplainable cancers, difficulty with reproduction, neurological disorders such as ADHD, and autism in kids. Clearly, many of these toxic ingredients are responsible for such diseases.
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