If you are a parent starting or raising a family, then the most important priority on your list is keeping your baby healthy and happy. To do this, you must ensure that your home is clean and safe. But, if you’re cleaning with traditional cleaners, you may not realize that they are filled with chemicals that could be harming your family’s health.
Continue reading to learn more about which dangerous chemicals for kids to look out for when purchasing cleaning products, as well as how they impact your family’s health.
How Bad Are Chemicals, and Why Should You Implement Safe Cleaning Practices?
Unfortunately, the biggest reason why chemicals should be avoided is that we don't know their full impacts. As many as 100,000 chemicals being used in everyday household products have not been adequately evaluated for safety. As more and more chemicals are being tested, more negative health effects are being discovered.
Furthermore, testing is not conducted or required by U.S. government agencies, and manufacturers can omit ingredients listing on cleaning products.
When testing is conducted on chemicals, the standards are not as rigorous as you might think. A "toxic" warning label is only required for a chemical if more than 50% of animals tested die due to the chemical.
Many household cleaning products like all-purpose and bleach cleaners require safety measures, such as wearing gloves, only using them in well-ventilated areas, and avoiding combining with other cleaners. While these precautions are essential, they are not fool-proof and should raise a red flag regarding what these products are doing to your body and well-being over time.
What Chemicals Should You Avoid?
Continue reading to learn about some of the specific chemicals you should look out for and avoid when possible.
Many household cleaning products that contain fragrances, such as cleaning solutions and wipes, contain phthalates. Companies are not required to disclose these chemicals on their labels, but fragrances are a good indicator of whether a product contains phthalates.
These chemicals are proven to disrupt the endocrine system in your body, including lowering sperm counts in men and negative impacts on bone health, which can lead to bone diseases such as osteoporosis.
Phthalates are primarily taken in by our bodies through inhalation but can also be absorbed through skin contact and go directly to your organs.
Triclosan is an antibacterial ingredient used in detergents and soaps with dangerous impacts. Contrary to popular belief, antimicrobial chemicals like triclosan do not equal an increased level of cleanliness or sanitation. Instead, they cause bacteria and microbes to develop resistance to such chemicals and antibiotics used in the healthcare industry.
Triclosan also has negative impacts on the environment, as increased concentration of the chemical in waterways can be toxic to algae, an essential component of the aquatic ecosystem.
Chlorine is a common and well-known chemical that you are most likely exposed to very often. It can be found in bathroom cleaners, laundry whitening products, and even your home’s tap water.
This chemical can enter your body through ingestion, inhalation, and absorption through your skin. This chemical has severe effects in both the short-term and long-term. The most immediate impact that you may experience is respiratory irritation, but it can also have long-term implications for various parts of your body, such as your thyroid.
This chemical is most often found in window and glass cleaners that give them their unique and recognizable smell. It can also be found in the kitchen and multipurpose cleaners you might use to wipe down surfaces in your home. When inhaled or ingested in small amounts, this chemical can easily lead to throat irritation. If it is inhaled or ingested in large quantities, several health problems can occur, including:
- Liver damage
- Kidney damage
- Pulmonary edema
A commonly suggested alternative to cleaners containing this chemical is vinegar cleaning solutions, which clean and sanitize surfaces naturally and without negative health impacts.
Wipex: A Non-Chemical Cleaning Alternative
Wipex promotes a healthy lifestyle for families by offering natural cleaning products with essential oils and other safe, natural ingredients. These products are also cruelty-free and eco-friendly, so if you’re looking to change your lifestyle with eco-friendly living ideas, you can be sure that you’ll be doing your part to protect the environment when using our cleaning products.