I've blogged several times about the hazards of household cleaning chemicals. This topic is always fresh on my mind for two reasons. First, I face a constant barrage of news articles publicizing the growing knowledge that our new-fangled chemicals pose long term health threats. Second, I clean my home regularly... I am one of those who follows a cleaning schedule. In my frequent cleaning episodes, I am consistently thankful that I have found safe cleaning products.
Here are my thoughts on one interesting article that crossed my desk yesterday:
The article described a 12-week study published in the in the January issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Researchers determined that women with asthma exhibited a higher number of respiratory tract symptoms when exposed to commercial cleaning products. In case this is the first time you've heard about the associated risks of cleaning products, consider this a red flag for women who struggle with asthma and use toxic spray cleaning products.
Dr. Jonathon A. Bernstein, of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, and colleagues found that "women in both groups exhibited increased upper and lower respiratory tract symptoms in response to cleaning agents rated mild in toxicity, suggesting a subtle but potentially clinically relevant health effect of long-term, low-level chemical exposures."
Translation: You don't have to have asthma to experience respiratory symptoms when you clean with a toxic cleaning product. Even products rated mild in toxicity still affect your lungs and airways. However, if you have asthma, you are more likely to experience greater symptoms. As an extension, we must take into account long-term, cumulative effects of toxic chemicals in addition to the respiratory effects we notice as we are using them.
I like to read scientific articles. You may or may not... but does a review of a health-pertinent article help you out? Comment to let me know if you'd like more posts like this.