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Toxic Household Chemical Facts and Statistics

Posted Apr 28 2009 11:12am


Thank you toCynthia LathamVP of research and development, for this very compelling and wonderfully sourced data. 

Ms. Latham was responsible for helping our company become the firstClimate Neutral Certified Company in 2000 to offset 100% of C02 production.

Since 1950, at least 70,000 new chemical compounds have been invented and dispersed into our environment. Only a fraction of these have been tested for human toxicity. We are, by default, conducting a massive clinical toxicology trial, and our children and their children are the experimental animals.

[Source: Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Raising Children Toxic Free]

150 chemicals found in the home are connected to allergies, birth defects, cancer and psychological disorders.

[Source: Consumer Protection Agency (CPA)]

3 groups of people are primarily affected by indoor chemical concentrations because they spend more time indoors and their immune systems are weaker. The 3 groups are: Infants and toddlers, Chronically ill, Elderly

[Source: 1988 EPA, 5-year study]

Liquid dish soap is the leading cause of poisonings in the home for children under the age of six (over 2.1 million accidental poisonings per year). Most brands of liquid dish soap contain Formaldehyde and ammonia.

Of the chemicals found in personal care products: 884 are toxic, 146 cause tumors, 218 cause reproductive complications, 778 cause acute toxicity, 314 cause biological mutations, 376 cause skin and eye irritations

[Source: United States House of Representatives Report, 1989]

Out of 2,435 pesticide poisonings in a one-year period, over 40% were due to exposure to disinfectants and similar cleaning products in the home.

[Source: State of California Study]

Most laundry detergent contains a form of NTA. NTA is a substance we may reasonably anticipate to be a carcinogen.

[Source: The Merck Index]

Household Chlorine bleaches which claim to disinfect are classified as pesticides under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act. Inadvertently mixing bleach with other cleaners that contain ammonia produces a toxic chloramines gas. These toxic gases can cause coughing, loss of voice, a feeling of burning or suffocation, and even death.

[Source: Guide to Hazardous Products Around the Home, Household Hazardous Waste Project, 1989]

Women who work in the home have a 54% higher death rate from cancer than women who work outside of the home.

[Source: 17- year EPA study]

As more toxic chemicals have been introduced to our everyday environment in greater amounts over the last 20 to 30 years, the level of toxins stored in dipose tissues (fat cells) of our bodies have risen. Bioaccumulation studies have shown that some toxins store in our bodies for life. Greater and greater amounts are being stored at younger ages. One study showed that in the fat of 100% of the people tested was 1,4-Dichlorobenzene, a chemical found in most household deodorizers and room fresheners. Some products release contaminants into the air right away, others do so gradually over a period of time. Some stay in the air up to a year. These contaminants, found in many household and personal care products can cause dizziness, nausea, allergic reactions, eye/skin/respiratory tract irritations and some cause cancer.  

[American Lung Association]

Asthma was once a very rare disease. Now the condition is extremely common, the asthma rate has tripled in the last 20 years with nearly 30 million Americans currently afflicted.

[Source: Consumer Federation of America, 1997]

In one decade, there has been a 42% increase in asthma (29% for men, 82% for women). The higher rate for women is believed to be due to women's longer exposure times to household chemicals.

[Source: Center for Disease Control]

Childhood asthma has increased by more than 40% since 1980.

[Source: Environmental Health Perspectives, June 1997; 105 (6)]

Asthma death in children and young people increased by a dramatic 118% between 1980 and 1993.

[Source: Environmental Health Threats to Children, Environmental Protection Agency 175-F-96-001, September 1996]

The average child visits the doctor 23 times in the 1st 4 years of life, with the most common complaint being respiratory ailment.

[Source: National Center for Health Statistics, 1997]

Developing cells in children's bodies are more susceptible to damage than adult cells that have completed development, especially for the central nervous system. During the development of a child, from conception through adolescence, there are particular windows of vulnerability to environmental hazards. Most disturbing until a child is approximately 13 months of age, they are virtually no ability to fight the biological and neurological effects of toxic chemicals.

[Source: Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Raising Children Toxic Free]

Today, children have chemical exposures from birth that their parents didn't have until they were adults. Because children are exposed to toxins at an earlier age than adults, they have more time to develop environmentally triggered diseases, with long latency periods, such as cancer.

[Source: Environmental Policy and Children's Health, Future of Children, Summer/Fall 1995; 5(2): 34-52]

Formaldehyde is a highly toxic substance. It is a known cancer-causing agent. It damages the neurological connectors in the body. It is an irritant to the eyes, nose, throat and lungs and may cause: skin reactions, ear infections, headaches , depression, asthma, joint pain, dizziness, mental confusion, nausea, disorientation , phlebitis , fatigue, Vomiting, sleep disturbances, laryngitis

One in five people are sensitive to formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is commonly found in: drugs, mouthwash, hairspray, cosmetics, cleaning products , perfumes , waxes, hair setting lotions, shampoo, air fresheners, fungicides, fingernail polish, floor polishes, dry cleaning solvents, toothpaste, laundry spray starch, Anti-perspirants, just to name a few…

Due to the increase in toxic buildup in our bodies, including the toxic buildup of formaldehyde, dead bodies are not decomposing as fast as they used to. Bodies now start to decompose within 7 to 10 days after death. During the Vietnam War, Vietnamese bodies started to decompose within 24 to 48 hours. However, Americans didn't start to decompose for 4 to 5 days. Twice as much formaldehyde was needed to embalm a person 20 years ago compared to today.

How many of these names would you have recognized as formaldehyde? Formalin, Methanal, Methyl Aldehyde, Methylene Oxide, Oxymethylene, Bfv*, Fannoform*, Formol*, Fyde*, Karsan*, Methaldehyde, Formalith*, Methylene Glycol, Ivalon*, Oxomethane, Formalin 40, Formalin, Formic Aldehyde, Hoch, Paraform, Lysoform*, Morbocid, Trioxane, Polyoxmethylene, * denotes trade name

Warning labels on containers refer only to toxic hazards from ingestion; however, only 10% of health problems from chemicals are caused by ingestion.  90% are caused by the inhalation of vapors and absorption of particles.

Do you still want to use products in your home that contain formaldehyde?

Phenol is an extremely caustic chemical that burns the skin. Absorption of phenol through the lungs or skin can cause: central nervous system damage, pneumonia, respiratory tract infection, heart-rate irregularities, skin irritation, kidney and liver damage, numbness, vomiting, and can be fatal

Phenol is a very common chemical and is regularly found in the following common products: air fresheners, aftershave, bronchial mists, chloroseptic throat spray, deodorants, feminine powders & sprays, hair spray, decongestants, mouthwash, aspirin, solvents, acne medications, antiseptics, calamine lotions, cleaning products, detergents, furniture polish, hair setting lotions, lice shampoo, polishes, cold capsules, all-purpose cleaners, aerosol disinfectants, anti-itching lotions , carnex , cosmetics, disinfectant cleaners, hand lotions, lip balms, sunscreen and lotions, insecticides, cough syrups, just to name a few…

Do you still want to use products in your home that contain Phenol ?

Alternative Cleaning Products

Plant Based Personal Care Products

Plant Based Skin Care

Mineral Based Cosmetics

  me ....thinking green
image sourced from flickr.com - thanks ever so much

Karen Hanrahan ~ Wellness Educator/Nutritional Consultant/Blog Author
Websites:
NutritionWeight Loss, andGreen Clean
 
If you're not cleaning green - what's stopping you? Could you celebrate Earth Day everyday?


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