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Are air fresheners dangerous?

Original post made by MPworkingMom, Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park, on Sep 20, 2007

I love it when my personal dislikes are validated by science.

I hate stinky, chemical air "fresheners" so I was particularly pleased today when I saw this story in the Chronicle Web Link about environmental groups petitioning the EPA and the Consumer Product Safety Commission to test and regulate these products.

The dangerous chemicals found in some of the air fresheners that were tested harm not only asthmatics and people with delicate lungs, but also are linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

I have a relative whose house reeks of multiple air fresheners, so now I just have to figure out a subtle way to show her this article.

Comments (2)

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Posted by Joanne
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 20, 2007 at 11:51 am

Not to be a stick in the mud, but any study of air fresheners might do well to broaden its scope to perfumes. Those "air fresheners" can also irritate human air passages, especially when they're overused.


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Posted by MPworkingMom
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 20, 2007 at 12:05 pm

Perfumes contain phthalates, as do many air fresheners. Here's one reason to worry about phthalates, from the Chronicle's article:

"Lab animal studies show that some phthalates interfere with hormonal systems, disrupt testosterone production and cause malformation of sex organs. Some studies of humans have shown a link between exposure and adverse changes in the genitals of baby boys."

A good resource for finding out if your shampoo or perfume contains potentially harmful chemicals is the Environmental Working Group's "Skin Deep" site: Web Link .


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