Are your air fresheners creating toxic air?
by N J Howell
Detoxing Your Home
This is part three of a four-part health report on air freshener safety. In part one, the question was are you breathing toxic air?. Please read part one for a better understanding of this and other parts of the health series on air freshener safety.
What Are The Symptoms of Breathing Toxic Air?
Are you experiencing symptoms that might indicate you are breathing toxic air in your home? Chemicals in commonly-used household products may be the culprit if you are experiencing any of the following:
* Headaches for no known reason
* Unexplained sniffling in absense of cold or flu
* Unexplained stuffed sinuses
* Unexplained cough in absense of physical cause
* Unexplained fatique
* Bouts with itchy eyes
Of course, a lot of the symptoms above have a wide range of conditions that could be causing them. One of the best ways to determine if it's toxic air in your home is to notice if these symptoms regularly occur or get worse when returning home after being away for at least a few hours.
Pay particular attention to new health symptoms that crop up and track back to see if you introduced a new air freshener, washing detergent or other new household product into the home. Be particularly mindful of children exposed to new air fresheners, and watch them for any symptoms of allergic reaction. Also watch for anything looking like an allergic reaction in children, which may point to allergies to chemicals in washing detergents, shampoos or soaps containing chemicals.
If I had lung problems or a breathing disorder, I would err on the side of caution and not introduce any more chemicals into my environment than I had to, regardless of whether those chemicals were considered safe. Further, if any substance made me sneeze, my eyes itch, or made me feel fatiqued on waking, I'd toss without compunction. And any home with asthmatic children should check with their doctor before using any type of product containing chemicals, including perfumes, perfumed washing powders, and air fresheners.
Respiratory Health Disclaimer: If you experience trouble breathing or other signs of respiratory distress, you should check with your doctor to rule out other conditons such as asthma or allergies that could be causing the discomfort.