A clean environment is essential to protect our health. However, a lot of cleaning products have harmful chemicals in their ingredients. Several of these cleaning chemicals are even corrosive or flammable. What’s more, mixing certain cleaning products can lead to serious health issues.
Why Mixing Cleaning Chemicals Can Lead to Health Issues
The majority of household products and cleaning chemicals can cause eye or throat irritations, headaches, and other health issues, including cancer. Some of these products even release volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are deadly chemicals.
VOCs and various chemicals that are released when cleaning supplies are used can be partly responsible for allergic reactions, chronic respiratory problems, and headaches. How these chemicals affect individuals who are suffering from respiratory illnesses, like asthma, are currently being studied. However, previous research has indicated that exposure to chemicals emitted by cleaning supplies contributes to asthma and other respiratory problems.
These chemicals become even deadlier when mixed with other cleaning agents. For instance, bleach and cleaning products containing bleach should never be combined with ammonia or ammonia-based products. Combining the two will create a gas that causes chronic breathing problems and could even be fatal.
Recent studies have also revealed that even the natural fragrances utilized in several cleaning products, especially air fresheners, can be deadly. The chemicals from these products could react to the high ozone levels created by some indoor sources (ex. air cleaning equipment) or even from the air outdoors to create formaldehyde. This is a known carcinogen. Chemical reactions could also produce dangerous fine particles that can exacerbate asthma and other lung problems and increase the risk of stroke and heart attacks.
How to Avoid Problems That Come From Using Cleaning Chemicals
Prevention is worth a pound of cure. That saying becomes even more important when it concerns your health. To avoid developing physical problems from cleaning chemicals, make sure that you read the labels of any household products or cleaning supplies before purchasing them.
Choose cleaning products that do not have or use minimal amounts of VOCs, flammable ingredients, fragrances, and irritants. It’s also a good idea to stop using air fresheners.
Unfortunately, laws in certain countries do not require manufacturers to list down all the ingredients used in their products. It should also be emphasized that just because a cleaning product has been classified as “green,” it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are safer to use. It’s best to be more thorough in your research and check reliable sources, like your country’s Environmental Protection Agency. They could provide options for safer cleaning products.
You can also look into alternatives. A mixture of warm water and soap is a worthy substitute, especially for home cleaning. Baking soda is excellent for scrubbing surfaces. Meanwhile, a vinegar and water mixture is good for cleaning glass.
One important thing to remember when using cleaning products is that the area has to be well ventilated. Make sure doors and windows are open to ensure good air circulation. Never use household cleaning products in a small, enclosed area.
We all want a clean environment. However, mixing certain cleaning chemicals can be dangerous and could lead to serious health issues. Remember that bleach and ammonia are a deadly combination. You should also check product labels for toxic ingredients.