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Toxic Cleaners and their Alternatives

The Holiday season brings guests, fun, happiness, gifts, and cleaning! Yes, people clean for the holidays, and it is more than just decluttering your closet. Cleaning checklists include cleaning the walls and floors, deep cleaning the bathroom and kitchen, cleaning the décor items, polishing the furniture, removing stains from the carpet, rug, or couch, and much more.

It is undoubtedly a good idea to refresh your home during the holidays. Routine cleaning, in general, is a task in itself. However, we frequently choose the simple and quick technique of cleaning, which is to use chemical and harmful cleaners. We never analyze the influence of these cleaners on us, the substances they contain, or how to prevent the toxic impact of the chemical cleaner.

If you have never considered it before, this is your sign to reconsider your cleaning habits this season. Let’s take a look at how common cleaners are harmful and toxic and what you can do about it.

All-purpose cleaner:

Let’s start with the most common all-purpose cleaner on the market. Grease-cutting agents, detergents, and disinfectants are commonly found in cleansers. The compounds in these agents may irritate the eyes, nose, and throat. The hazardous chemicals in these products include ammonia, ethylene glycol aminobutyl acetate, and sodium hypochlorite.

Upholstery and Rug cleaner:

Long-term use of cleaning chemicals for rugs, carpets, and upholstery that include perchloroethylene, naphthalene, and ammonium hydroxide may cause cancer, nausea, and dizziness. Make sure you’re using these goods in a well-ventilated place. When breathing near the poisonous vapours of these items, take extra caution.

Related Article: ARE YOU READING THE INGREDIENTS IN YOUR SKIN PRODUCTS?

Air fresheners:

Who doesn’t enjoy a house that smells fresh and inviting? But at what cost are you getting that amazing air? Plug-in Air fresheners contain Formaldehyde, which has been related to prolonged nose and throat discomfort. It causes nosebleeds, respiratory problems, and even cancer.

Toilet bowl and drain cleaner:

The most disturbing thing you can imagine is a blocked toilet bowl and drain. However, keep in mind that the chemicals you use for drain cleaning may include lye and sulfuric acid. It might irritate the skin and eyes. Toilet bowl cleaners often contain hydrochloric acid or bleach.

Safety steps before using the chemical cleaners:

These disinfecting cleansers include toxic chemicals that can cause a variety of health problems in the long term. Also, do not mix them with other household products or cleaners as this might result in deadly fumes. For example, combining bleach and ammonia will result in hazardous fumes and chloramines. Shortness of breath, chest discomfort and fluid in the lungs are symptoms of chloramine gas exposure.

Always use appropriate ventilation while working with chemical-based products. Switch on the exhaust fan or leave the door open. When using the items, wear protective gloves and eyewear.

Alternatives of Chemical cleaners:

We now know the items’ side effects, but you may be asking if not this, then what. There are numerous chemical-free cleaning products on the market, and you can consider them, but we will reveal to you how to make your home sparkle and shine using natural compounds. The following natural cleaning solutions are suited for everybody because they require just the combining of two or three ingredients. Let us have a look.

Baking Soda:

Baking soda is the most versatile cleaning substance. This small odourless solution will wow you with its amazing cleaning properties, such as oven oil, burned cookware, or rusted pans, to mention a few. Baking soda, vinegar, and water make an excellent cleaner for bathroom and kitchen surfaces. It eliminates the odour and leaves the surface sparkling clean.

Make a thick paste with baking soda and vinegar, gently wipe on a carpet stain, let it dry, and then vacuum.

Related Article: Why You Should Start Eating The Skin Of Fruits And Vegetables

Lemmon:

Nature has provided this naturally pleasant smell. In a simmering saucepan, combine lemon peels, water, cinnamon stick, and cloves to make a room freshener.

Soak a sponge in lemon juice and place it in the refrigerator to remove odours.

Homemade Antibacterial Solution:

Can you imagine making an antibacterial solution at home with only a few snaps of your fingers? Add 10-15 drops of peppermint essential oil to an equal mixture of water and vinegar. And it’s done! The chemical-free antibacterial solution has a pleasant scent.

These are just a few simple and quick methods for chemical-free cleaning. However, there are several solutions available to decrease your exposure to chemical cleaning. Consider how dangerous these chemical cleansers will be for children, the elderly, and pregnant women. Always bear in mind how chemical cleansers will affect the environment; do you unwilling want to contribute to pollution and environmental harm? Small changes in everyday cleaning practices can safeguard the environment, aquatic life, plants, and your and your loved ones’ health in the long term.

At Green Schools Green Future, we support ECO & ORGANIC products for the environment.

Sources:

https://www.bhg.com/homekeeping/house-cleaning/house-cleaning-checklists/holiday-cleaning-checklist/

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/11397-household-chemical-products-and-their-health-risk

https://www.indoordoctor.com/blog/health-hazards-plug-air-fresheners/#:~:text=serious%20lung%20infections.-,Compounding%20the%20risks%20posed%20by%20formaldehyde%2C%20most%20major%20brands%20of,causes%20similar%20effects%20in%20humans.

https://doh.wa.gov/community-and-environment/contaminants/bleach-mixing-dangers

https://www.thekitchn.com/10-things-you-can-clean-with-the-magic-of-baking-soda-218316

Blog Image Credit: Ellie Burgin from Pexels

Written by Samreen Ishaq

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