Clean your House, Develop Asthma

According to a recent study from the Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology in Barcelona, Spain, using household cleaning sprays and scented air fresheners as little as once a week can raise a person’s risk of developing adult asthma. reports:

Fifteen per cent, or one in seven, adult asthma cases could be attributed to use of cleaning and deodorizing sprays, according to the study.

As someone who has trouble breathing while walking past the cleaning section of the local drug store, this does not come as a great surprise. What is interesting is just how much your risk of developing asthma increases:

The risk of developing asthma increased with frequency of cleaning and number of different sprays used, but on average was about 30 to 50 per cent higher in people regularly exposed to cleaning sprays than in others.

Cleaning sprays such as air fresheners, furniture cleaners and glass cleaners had a particularly strong effect.

The researchers theorize that chemicals in the products trigger an inflammatory response in the lungs when the particles are inhaled.

The moral of the story is, if you need an air freshener, don’t use a spray: get up and bake some cookies, a cake or a pie. And if you need cleaners, make sure that you are using one of the increasing number of scent-free, less-toxic products on the market. Finally, if you need a cleaner that is sold as a spray, you can easily replace the spray top with a normal squirt top and just squirt a little bit of the cleaner on a cloth. We have been doing that lately and it works just as well without hurting the lungs. As an added bonus, you use a lot less. And with the money you save, you can cook another batch of cookies!

9 Responses to “Clean your House, Develop Asthma”

  1. Anne Says:

    Great news!That’s a good reason to stop cleaning!

  2. zakary Says:

    Any reason is a good reason when it comes to avoiding cleaning! Unfortionatly with the cat and dog it seems we can’t delay to long or else we would be ankle deep in hair…

  3. Danielle Says:

    Pour ce qui est de l’odeur ambiante, j’utilise un diffuseur d’huile essentielle chauffée à la bougie… et pour le ménage, je n’utilise que rarement les sprays… plus des produits liquides! De toutes façons, en général, les sprays qui sentent bon puent!

  4. zakary Says:

    Companies have some very strange ideas when it comes to desirable scents. It is funny what they think a ‘fresh mountain breeze’ or ‘gentle summer rain’ smells like. Obviously they don’t get outdoors enough…

  5. Anne Says:

    What about fresh vinager scent in the kitchen (cleans the floor just fine) and fresh baking soda in the bathroom (good enough for the bath tub)?

  6. Bill Says:

    Whatever it takes for another batch of your cookies gets my support.

  7. Danielle Says:

    Les biscuits, c’est un peu long à faire! Mais c’est vrai que ça parfume!

  8. zakary Says:

    I get your support for only one batch of cookies, that is pretty good. Great, now I have a craving for cookies!

  9. sophie Says:

    I like the smell of cookies a lot better than that of vinegar, but vinegar and baking soda do a much better job at cleaning the house… Cookies actually tend to make it more messy. At least when we are cooking ;-)