Earth Day is Monday, so I feel like it’s appropriate to touch on non-toxic cleaners. Going green isn’t just the cool thing to do these days, it’s the only logical way to go when it comes to what you’re cleaning your house with. Having a clean home is a great feeling, but you may not realize that what you cleaned it with may have just made it dirtier.
If you have kids, I hope this doesn’t offend you, but it is what it is. You wouldn’t let your kids drink the cleaners under the sink because they are labeled as toxic, so why would you let your baby roll around on the floor that just been cleaned with them or eat off the counter that has been sprayed down with them? So many kids (and adults) suffer from Asthma from an early age. Toxic cleaners/chemicals have been linked to Asthma and other breathing problems and not to mention cancer and other problems with major organs for years now, but still people aren’t switching over? Why? The main excuse I hear…the cost. Medical bills will always trump the couple extra bucks a month.
So how dangerous are the toxic cleaners? Here are a few facts:
- 90% of all poison exposure occur at home.
- 1 in 13 school aged children have asthma. Asthma rates in children increased more than 160% from 1988-1994.
- EPA reports that air pollution is up to 5x higher inside than outside. We spend 90% of our time indoors.
- EPA studies indicate that elevated concentration of household chemicals persist in the air. Long term exposure to chemicals inside our homes is extremely harmful.
- Children are highly vulnerable to chemical toxins. Pound for pound of body weight, children drink more water, eat more food and breathe more air than adults. This is why children will have substantially heavier exposures than adults to toxins that are present in water, food, and air.
- The average US home generates more than 20 pounds of household hazardous waste per year (toilet cleaners, tub and tile cleaners, oven cleaners, and bleach). That’s HUGE.
Let’s talk specifics…
- Chlorine Bleach is the chemical most frequently involved in household poisonings in the U.S.
- Degreasers may contain petroleum distillates, which can damage lung tissues and dissolve fatty tissue around nerve cells.
- Glass Cleaners may contain ammonia. Ammonia fumes can irritate the skin, eyes, and respiratory system.
- Oven Cleaners can be among the most dangerous cleaning products and can cause severe damage to eyes, skin, mouth, and throat.
- Toilet Bowl Cleaners can be extremely dangerous cleaning products and can be harmful if inhaled—and fatal if swallowed.
All I know is…