Within the last couple of decades, we have heard a good deal about the pitfalls of makeup, beauty products, and the household cleaning products we all use in our daily lives. We have discovered some really frequent ingredients – such as the compound triclosan discovered in antibacterial soap – may have some scary-damaging results on our health, causing the FDA (The U.S. Food and Drug Administration) to issue a warning against this compound.
This analysis is important because while using these cleaning products, effects like asthma attacks are well-studied, but until today we have not understood what happens to our health longterm, once we have been exposed to them.
What they discovered should make us think twice about the use of chemical cleaners. In 1 instance, forced vital capacity (FVC) – a measure often utilised to evaluate lung power and capability – diminished faster for women who cleaned their own homes regularly.
Specifically, the data revealed a 4.3 mL/year quicker reduction for women who used cleaning products at home, but for people who work as cleaners, it was a staggering 7.1 mL/year quicker reduction.
What exactly does this mean in real life?
This decrease in lung function was like 10 to 20 pack-years of cigarette smoking. “Pack-years” is a phrase employed by clinicians to quantify tobacco smoking and can be calculated by multiplying the number of packs of cigarettes consumed daily by the number of years that the individual has consumed. In addition, they found that asthma was common.
“We emphasized that such compounds, by causing just small harm to the airways after days, every year, could hasten the speed of lung function decrease that occurs with age”
Inhaling particles from cleaning products can irritate the mucous membranes in the lungs and lead to changes in how you breathe and also damage your airways. When you consider this, the study’s outcomes are shocking. Additionally, the study authors emphasised that using chemical cleaners is not even necessary as water and soap are equally as powerful.
- Øistein Svanes, Randi J Bertelsen, Stein HL Lygre, Anne E Carsin, Josep M Antó, Bertil Forsberg, José M García-García, José A Gullón, Joachim Heinrich, Mathias Holm, Manolis Kogevinas, Isabel Urrutia, Bénédicte Leynaert, Jesús M Moratalla, Nicole Le Moual, Theodore Lytras, Dan Norbäck, Dennis Nowak, Mario Olivieri, Isabelle Pin, Nicole Probst-Hensch, Vivi Schlünssen, Torben Sigsgaard, Trude D Skorge, Simona Villani, Debbie Jarvis, Jan P Zock, Cecilie Svanes. Cleaning at Home and at Work in Relation to Lung Function Decline and Airway Obstruction. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 2018; DOI: