Most of us think of home as a place of comfort and safety. But, what if the things inside your home that are designed to keep you safe and comfortable were actually hurting you? Listed below are five toxic things commonly found inside people’s homes that can cause serious health problems.
Paints — Most indoor paints contain Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). These compounds are slowly released into your home’s air and are highly toxic when inhaled. Exposure to VOC’s can cause a range of illnesses including asthma, neurological disorders, fertility problems, and even cancer.
Carpets — Many carpets and area rugs contain chemicals that make them more fire and stain resistant. These chemicals cause visual and respiratory problems.
Vinyl and Laminate Flooring — These types of flooring frequently contain formaldehyde. This can cause numerous unpleasant short-term effects and even cancer if someone is exposed to high amounts of it for a long enough period of time.
Cleaning Products — Many multi-surface and glass cleaners contain ammonia, a substance known to cause respiratory, liver, and kidney problems. Other cleaning products such as bleach and oven cleaners release fumes that can cause permanent respiratory damage.
Insulation — In older homes, insulation often contains asbestos, which is a known carcinogen. In modern homes, insulation often contains Brominated Flame Retardants (BFR’s). These chemicals can cause neurobehavioral problems and endocrine disruptions.
Many people may find this list surprising. But what’s perhaps most shocking is that it’s by no means a comprehensive list. In fact, there are countless other common materials that are just as damaging to our health as the ones listed above.
So, what can we do? Obviously, we can’t eliminate all of these things from our lives completely. But there are a few steps we can take to minimize their negative impacts of our lives.
- Use all-natural cleaning products that don’t contain harmful chemicals.
- Open the windows more often to let fresh air in and expel harmful gases from your home.
- Buy a true HEPA air purifier that is capable of filtering out VOCs
- Place live houseplants around your home. A variety of common indoor plants can absorb many harmful airborne pollutants.
- Spend more time outside
These are just a few ideas for living healthier inside your home. If you come up with any more, contact me or leave a comment, and don’t forget to share this page with a friend! If you found this blog interesting, consider reading my blog about East House. Its interior is finished out with many natural materials such as wood and stone to keep its occupants healthy.