1. Health Risks from Exposure
Most household cleaners in use today are made from petroleum-based solvents. As these solvents decompose they emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can cause headaches, dizziness, irritability, confusion, and irritation to the eyes, nose, throat and skin in even the smallest doses. Research has proven a correlation in cancer and prolonged exposure to these volatile organic compounds. Additionally, these cleaners and some plastics contain phalates. Phalates are chemicals are known hormone disruptors that can even be found in our drinking water.
When you are exposed to these chemicals it is incredibly taxing on your body’s immune system. By switching to non-toxic household cleaners you reduce the stress to your body’s immune system and free it to detoxify the body and use energy more efficiently for healing. For example, when you use toxic laundry detergents and fabric softeners to wash your clothes and sheets, you are exposing your body to noxious chemicals even when you are asleep and the body should be at rest. Additionally many of these chemicals place stress on neurological development in children and can even cause severe damage in adults. This can be prevented by switching to non-toxic household cleaners.
2. Accidental Poisoning
In addition to latent exposure to harmful chemicals, using petroleum-based cleaners also puts your children at risk of accidental poisoning if ingested. The EPA claims that hazardous cleaning products are the second most common source of poisonings in children. Over 80,000 children are hospitalized each year for ingesting household cleaners and an average of 39 children under the age of 5 lose their lives to chemical poisoning. Even adults have been treated for accidentally inhaling fumes from cleaners such as dishwasher detergent. It is not enough to switch to biodegradable and environmentally safe cleaners, they need to be human-safe as well. This means that if they are accidentally ingested they will not cause bodily harm.
3. Environmental Pollution
When you clean your sink with a toxic chemical it is usually rinsed down the drain and into our water system. Many people don’t realize the water that goes through our drainage systems is recycled and pumped back to us to be re-used in our showers and drinking water. The water does pass through purification plants, but no plant is able to completely remove unsafe toxins. By switching to non-toxic cleaners and persuading your friends to do the same, you are doing your part to reduce your community’s chemical exposure and improve our environmental health.
Learn more about the importance of using non-toxic cleaners [http://www.threebrancheshealth.com/articles/reducing-toxic-exposures-where-do-i-start/] in your home.