Air fresheners are a quick fix to cover up foul odors or freshen up a room. Americans alone spend upwards of 1.72 billion dollars on air fresheners annually.
But behind their sweet-smelling mask lies a host of toxic chemicals, which can create all kinds of health issues.
The illnesses associated with frequent air freshener use are far and wide, with babies and expectant mothers being the most at risk. Babies tend to suffer more bouts of diarrhea and earaches, while adults may experience headaches, depression, itchiness, congestion, respiratory problems, high pulse rates, nausea, and other ailments.
Be advised that no matter whether you choose a commercial air freshener in the form of an aerosol can, spray bottle, plug-in liquid or gel, carpet foam or powder, even cardboard car fresheners, incense, and many candles–you are exposing yourself and your family to harmful chemicals.
Some of the harmful ingredients or chemical by-products of commercial air fresheners and their negative effects on health include:
- Phthalates – Hormone-disrupting chemicals which can effect brain, nervous and immune system development, reproduction, mental processing and metabolism, and birth defects
- Formaldehyde – Cancer-causing according to the EPA
- Acetone, Propane – Flammable irritant of eyes and throat, W
- Ethanol – Can cause birth defects
- Isobutane/Butane – Allergen and irritant
- Benzene – Carcinogen which should have zero exposure according to the WHO
- VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds) – Known allergen
- Xylene – Linked to nausea and “sick building syndrome” as well as kidney and liver damage
- Naphthalene – Suspected carcinogen linked to blood, kidney and liver problems
- Methoxychlor (pesticide) – Reproductive disorder, estrogenic effect, leukemia, depression, diarrhea, damage to liver, kidney, and heart, and – by chronic exposure – growth retardation
- Paradichclorobenzene – Shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals
- Phenol – Flammable, corrosive and extremely toxic
A Natural Alternative
Ionized acidic water from a Chanson water ionizer is non-toxic and has antibacterial properties that can kill odors on contact. You can make your own all-natural air freshener spray by filling a spray bottle with ionized acidic water and a few drops of your favorite essential oil(s).
Then just spritz any time you would a commercial air freshener. Unlike chemicals, essential oils contain healing and beneficial properties. Try experimenting with oils of lavender, ylang ylang, sage, rosemary, lemon, lime, and grapefruit to create a fresh, natural scent. We use and recommend Young Living essential oils.
Unscented ionized acidic water is also an effective replacement for kitchen cleaners like Windex and Lysol. Because it’s just water it will evaporate, leaving no harmful residue on your counters. Those who are not ready to purchase a water ionizer can try a 4 oz. spritzer bottle of Chanson ionized acidic water (it also works wonders for the skin, body and hair!)
Many of the toxic chemicals listed above are also finding their way into our drinking water supplies, so investing in a quality pre-filter or whole house water filter is also crucial to health. Visit www.chansonwater.com for more information.