Have you ever had difficulty breathing after cleaning the bathroom? Do you wonder if the chemicals in those household cleaners are doing more harm than good? Well, you might want to take note of this article…
IFL Science writes that the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine recently published a study that said the cocktail of chemicals used to clean kitchens and bathrooms may be ruining the respiratory systems of women, but not so much men.
Cleaning products tied to faster lung function decline in women "“This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t clean – of course we need to clean our houses,” he told Reuters Health by phone. “But we need to question what chemicals we’re using and how they affect us.” https://t.co/tU0L9t8Stn
— Susan Cann (@susancann) March 6, 2018
Based on twenty-year study involving 6,235 volunteer subjects broken up into three groups (those who cleaned professionally, those who cleaned domestically, and those who did not clean at all) and had their ‘forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) measured, scientists reached the following conclusions:
FEV1 decreased 3.9 milliliters (ml)/year more in women (but not men) who cleaned for work and 3.6 milliliters (ml)/year in women who cleaned the home.
IFL Science writes that the “forced vital capacity (FVC), which is the total volume of air you can exhale in a second by force, also declined in women who cleaned either professionally (7.1 ml/year) or domestically (4.3 ml/year faster).”
— Digital Journal (@digitaljournal) February 20, 2018
The onset of asthma was also higher in women that cleaned regularly both at work and at home.
“When you think of inhaling small particles from cleaning agents that are meant for cleaning the floor and not your lungs, maybe it is not so surprising after all,” Øistein Svanes, lead author and a doctoral student at the Department for Clinical Science, said in a statement.
As mentioned above, the study did not find any association between decline in expiratory function and cleaning among men who cleaned for work or domestically. The authors of the study imply that there are biological reasosn for the gap, but not so says the American Council on Science and Health.
It is more likely, says the Council, that the cause had to do with the fact that “85 percent of women involved in the study cleaned at home compared to 47 percent of men.”
“The take home message of this study is that in the long run cleaning chemicals very likely cause rather substantial damage to your lungs,” Øistein Svanes explained. “These chemicals are usually unnecessary; microfiber cloths and water are more than enough for most purposes.”
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