Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hidden Dangers of Air Fresheners

I've mentioned this before but it bears repeating for those who've never connected that this may be triggering asthma and allergies in their family.....air fresheners of almost any type contain chemicals that can cause major issues in our loved ones.  And according to new research, a lot more than allergies and asthma are at risk.  Hormonal abnormalities, birth defects and reproductive problems have been found a result of the chemicals used in even "all natural" products.

I married into a major allergic/asthmatic family and until then, had no clue what some people suffer from.  Didn't take long to start noticing what things caused problems.....that's my nature.  I am averse to just running for a medicine or a pill to "make things better"when there may be things we can avoid that solves the problem entirely.   (Allergies and asthma exist, but we can live ways that make things better, not worse.)  When we married, hubby was on handfuls of allergy and asthma meds, weekly allergy shots (from the age of 2) and suffering daily.  A few years in (after much convincing....) cleaning up his diet of dairy, wheat and a few other offending foods, along with removing scents in the home had him on very few to no meds on a daily basis.  He was shocked...having had no idea it was possible.  (He eventually has ELISA/Act blood testing and found onions, peppermint, Tylenol and spinach to be HUGE offenders......)

As it turns out, in our case that was true.  Along with cleaning up the diets of the asthma/allergy hubby and then subsequent allergic/asthmatic children, we found scents ranked VERY high on the list of offenders.   Oldest son had an epic meltdown after waking up from a nap and being surrounded by the scent of Future Floor Wax...had to run outside and it took a few hours for him to calm down.  He was under a year.....that happened quickly enough I put two and two together.

How many other kids are reactive to scents?

Around 8, our oldest child was put on allergy shots but became worse...We gave it weeks....finally I read the ingredients and saw Phenol in his refrigerated allergy serum.  Phenol....the stuff also found in Dow Bathroom Cleaner yet now being injected in my young child.

Ummm.....NO.  Some people are just more reactive than other people.  A simple food diary detailing every item ingested (and inhaled) and when will show results fairly quickly.  Things that occur in seconds are easy to figure out.  Things that are delayed can take weeks.  Youngest son could eat eggs on Monday and not react until Tuesday night....that took forever to connect.

Had I simply listened to doctors, my entire family would be on handfuls and handfuls of meds.....and we've proven that a simple change in diet and how we live can make dramatic improvements......something as "simple" as washing their clothes in scented detergent could send them in an asthma tailspin.....sleeping all night long on "scented" sheets?  Disastrous.

How many people stop and think of things like that?

As I said in an earlier post, just walking in a home where someone has sprayed Febreze in every room (in the guise of making it 'smell better') can trigger an asthma attack so quick, we turn and leave the second we smell it.

Read this report and see if any of it applies to your family or loved ones.

Have you found products that worsen asthma and allergies in your loved ones or yourself?



  1. Isn't it wild? I hope your post helps someone out there that just can't seem to put their finger on the problem. Yep, we have food and environmental things that we have to watch.

  2. Great post! When it comes to both Rx and OTC meds, I have reactions to a lot of things that others don't. I've suffered through that sort of thing too many times, not to be proactive about it. I'm also really sensitive to chemicals and plastics.


Thanks so much for your lovely comments!