Dust mites from Hidden Dangers Lurking in Your Home

Hidden Dangers Lurking in Your Home

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Hidden Dangers Lurking in Your Home

People are exposed to more than 700,000 different toxic chemicals on a daily basis; other estimates suggest more than 2 million. A lot of them are a lot closer to you than you may have previously thought.

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Dust mites

Mites are extremely to see with a naked eye, which makes them one of the hardest pests to get rid of. Dust mites are the most common in American households; they like to cling on fabrics, such as the carpet and clothing. They are usually found in beds, pillows and mattresses. If your skin is red, itchy and inflamed, you may be suffering from a mite infestation. Make sure you vacuum often, keep your clothes clean and dust frequently.

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Carpet

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) is the release (volatizing) of chemicals into the air. Health effects many include eye, nose and throat irritation, headaches, loss of coordination and nausea, damage to liver, kidney and central nervous system, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Another big problem associated with carpets is dust. Anywhere you have dust you can have pollen and dander.

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Expired medication

Expired medical products can be less effective or risky due to a change in chemical composition or a decrease in strength, according to the FDA. Certain old meds are at risk of bacterial growth. Sub-potent antibiotics can fail to treat infections, leading to more serious illnesses and antibiotic resistance.

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Wall paint

The concern with paint is lead. Some older homes have underlying layers of lead paint. When the paint chips children can eat the chips and be exposed to the lead.” If there is scraping or sanding of surfaces with lead paint, the lead contaminated dust can be breathed in and cause illness – mostly neurological but also physical, he adds.

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Fragrance and makeup products

They contain phthalates, which are ingredients that are not required to be listed on labels.  Even organic products can contain the harmful chemicals. Some types of phthalates have affected the reproductive system. Use natural oil for fragrance, if possible. Congress has banned the use of some phthalates in children’s products.

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Shower curtains

Shower curtains, too, are likely to contain phthalates. Also, most plastic curtains are mildew magnets. Washable fabric shower liners will last longer than plastic ones, but do you really want to bother to wash and clean them often? Besides, you’re still going to have to throw them out in about three months. People with mold/mildew allergies will probably need to replace them even more often.

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Antibacterial products

“Antibacterial” only sounds like a good product but it’s the triclosan component in the soap that causes problems. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says that animal studies have shown triclosan, which is also found in certain toothpastes and cosmetics, alters hormone regulation. However, data showing effects in animals does not always predict effects in humans. Other studies in bacteria have raised the possibility that triclosan contributes to making bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

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Air fresheners

The phthalates are the biggest problem here as well. The chemicals can lead to hormonal imbalances and reproductive problems. Side effects for men include lower testosterone levels, decreased sperm counts, and lower sperm quality, according to the National Resource Defense Council. Many air fresheners don’t even list phthalates as an ingredient.

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Cookware

Non-stick pans and pots are very tempting but can also be harmful. This kind of cookware has been made with chemicals that can be harmful to the liver, thyroid, and immune system in general. The problem is perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). Toxicological studies on animals indicate potential developmental, reproductive and systemic effects, according to the EPA. Go for stainless steel, glass, ceramic, or iron pots and pans.

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Cleaning products

A big concern, as is the case with carpeting, is chemical sensitivities, Hampy says. White adds inter-reaction with other chemicals, disinfectant reactions, and residual on surfaces. The multipurpose cleaners widely used for windows and kitchen items have 2-butoxyethanol, the ingredient that gives cleaners their distinct smell. Side effects include breathing problems, low blood pressure, lowered levels of hemoglobin, and metabolic acidosis (high levels of acid in the body), according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

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Blenders

Most people don’t clean the bottom thoroughly. It holds a gasket where bacteria actually stay. You increase the risk of variety of health issues, White says, such as salmonella, norovirus, and listeria. The CDC issued a warning and recalled certain dairy products after several deaths. Past outbreaks have been due to listeria in raw vegetables.

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Anything plastic

You may have heard of the toxic bisphenol A (BPA) found in plastics? BPA disrupts normal endocrine function, studies have shown. The chemical can have a significant impact on the brain. BPA also messes with hormones even at low doses, a University of Texas study has indicated. Don’t take a chance and switch to glass containers or stainless steel.

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Gas stove and heaters

Anything that is powdered with gas releases toxins into the air. This is especially dangerous if you’re using gas or wood burning stoves and furnaces because they can all produce carbon monoxide, which can lead to poisoning. Every year, at least 430 people die in the U. S. from it, according to the CDC. That’s why the agency recommends to never use a gas range or gas oven to heat a home.

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Soil under your house

The problem is radon, a radioactive gas that comes from the soil. Exposure to it is the second-leading cause of lung cancer (after smoking) in the U.S., according to the EPA. About 21,000 people die each year from radon-related lung cancer. You can test your house for radon, using a monitor. Designated safe standard levels are 2 to 4 picocuries per liter.

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Fridge

Potential problems with these common fridges include mold at door seals, depending on age refrigerant leaks. They have an electric coil in the freezer that melts frost every four hours, so you don’t have to do it. The water goes down to a tray and evaporates. If that pan has dust, which is likely, then all of it is blown right into your home. Make sure you clean the back of your fridge thoroughly.

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Water

Drinking water not just hydrogen and oxygen; it has minerals and chemicals, some of which can be very harmful. The water varies from place to place, depending on the condition of the source water from which it is drawn and the treatment – which can include chlorine or ozone – it receives. Toxins can still find their way into your home’s water system. Contaminant can range from industrial waste to radioactive substances.

Hidden Dangers Lurking in Your Home