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The majority of households have an impressive collection of cleaning products. A spray for bathtubs, a solution for mirrors, a product for furniture cleaning, a toilet scrubbing agent, and much more. All the labels promise people a squeaky-clean home with the least effort.

Not many homeowners realize that they have an army of harmful agents hidden in their cabinets and closets. The majority of household cleaning products contains chemicals, which can cause respiratory problems or worsen symptoms of asthma and other conditions.

When you grab a cleaning agent at the store, consider reading the label. You may be bringing an enemy into your home.  It’s tough to find harmless eco-friendly home cleaning products on the supermarket shelves.

Let’s take a look at substances you’d rather keep away from your home.

1. Parabens

You must have seen products that read “paraben-free” on the label. If such a disclaimer is absent, make sure to check the ingredients closely. Parabens are often used to fight fungi and microbes. While doing that, they could be absorbed by the skin and cause cancer.

Parabens may also cause hormonal imbalance, negatively affect the reproductive system, irritate skin, and cause breathing problems. Parabens on the ingredient list read like “methylparaben”, “butylparaben”, “propylparaben”, and “ethylparaben”.

2. Triclosan And Triclocarban

These chemicals are often used as antimicrobial agents in household cleaning products. Their use in soaps has been restricted in the USA for a few years. The EU bans their use in the majority of cosmetic products. However, they may still be present in cleaning agents.

Triclosan is a pesticide which can cause a hormonal imbalance. It affects the thyroid function and may interfere with breast development. This chemical irritates eyes and skin. If you use this ingredient on a regular basis, the bacteria in your home may develop resistance to the antimicrobial agents.

3. Phthalates

Another chemical which can cause a hormonal imbalance is phthalate. It’s used to add fragrance to anything from perfume to the laundry detergent. Many different phthalates are available on the market today. Some have been banned. Others are still part of the products you buy on a regular basis.

Since the law doesn’t oblige the manufacturers to list the fragrance-giving ingredient on the label, there is no way to check whether phthalates are used. The best way to go is to opt for fragrance-free products.

4. Chlorine Bleach

Chlorine bleach can be used in laundry detergents to whiten your clothes. However, large amounts of chlorine bleach can irritate the eyes, skin, and the respiratory system. If you mix chlorine bleach with other harmful substances, such as ammonia, it can release chlorine gas.

When exposed to chlorine gas, people experience nausea, chest pain, breathing problems, and many more unpleasant symptoms.

5. Ammonia

You can often find ammonia on the ingredients list of the glass cleaning solutions. Ammonia can irritate your throat, eyes, skin, and lungs. Contacting ammonia may cause skin burns and eye damage.  

Quaternary ammonium compounds are also harmful. You can find them in toilet cleaners and disinfecting products. These compounds can cause asthma attacks and may have an adverse effect on the human reproductive system. Studies show that they decrease fertility in mice.

Not many manufacturers list all the product ingredients on the label. According to the law, they need to provide the main ingredients only. If you want to find out about the rest, you can visit the website mentioned on the label.

The best way to avoid harmful substances in household products is too use as little as possible and consider eco-friendly substitutes.