Humans are exposed to an overwhelming number of toxins or chemicals that enter the body through inhalation, ingestion, or absorption through the skin. These toxins and chemicals are further made worse through the regular use of cleaning detergents and products because it has been established that they contain many toxins that are harmful to human health. Once these chemicals enter the body, they mix with fats and other body fluids where they are stored in the body system for many years (Barnett, 2015). Recent research shows that the most common toxins found in the human body were detergents. These detergents and other chemicals in the body cause a lot of health issues to people and it is high time that measures should be taken to protect the human body from these dangers. The average household or homestead will have approximately 300 chemicals in terms of garden products, cleaning products, handyman products, and detergents. Many of these chemicals have severe acute toxicity that can harm humans if ingested, especially by children. Research shows that many people in the United States are victims of these hazards. For this reason, it is vital for the government and other stakeholders to come up with measures that can help protect the citizens from the dangers posed by these household cleaning products.
II. Background information regarding household cleaning product hazards
Today, people are more cautious about their health than ever before. This has been brought about the fact that people are more educated about the importance of keeping a clean environment to keep away diseases and thereby, improve their health. The biggest contradiction cleaning brings is that these substances that are used at home to keep the environment clean and maintain health, are the main substances that might cause health issues because they have many chemicals and toxins that can affect the health of humans in a negative way (Mark, 2016). Many of these cleaning agents contain substances such as chlorine, Sodium Hydroxide, ammonia, 2-Butoxyethanol, Perchloroethylene (PERC), and Formaldehyde among other chemicals that have been identified as dangerous chemicals that can fatally kill a human if they are ingested. For this reason, it begs the question, why are people allowed to use these products even though they are dangerous to their health (Barnett, 2015). The main reason for this is that the government through many of its product control products does not consider some of these products as dangerous when they are in small doses and when a product is used the way it is supposed to be used. Unfortunately, this has not helped reduce the number of people across the world being affected by these chemicals. In the United States, all home poison-related emergencies form the majority of all emergency calls made by the people. Children are the most affected as they ingest these products and many of them even lose their lives (Hayley, Emma, Nicholas, & Vale, 2012). This shows the major threats these products can cause to the average American home and it is very important for corrective measures to be taken to ensure that people and more so children do fall victims to these cleaning substances.
III. Description and explanation of the problem
The increased use of cleaning agents in homes has resulted in an increase in the number of poisoning by these substances. When these substances are not handled well or when they are ingested accidentally, they can cause serious damage to the people. Nearly all homesteads in the United States use some kind of cleaning agent (Light, 2009). This includes a 100% usage of soaps and other forms or detergents and cleaning substances that contain chemicals and toxins that are harmful to the health of the users. The number of harmful chemicals in these products is high and harmful. Research shows that almost 27% of cleaning agents contain chemicals that cause asthma and other respiratory illnesses. About 15% of these substances contain cancerous substances. These figures are high and it is vital for measures to be taken to help protect the public from these harmful substances.
Causes of the Problem
The main cause of this health and social issues in society is the high level of toxic and chemical issues that affect the human system negatively. Even though these chemicals make these products effective in cleaning dirt from surfaces and other home appliances, they are harmful and pose a very big danger to humans and other animals that stay around the homes such as pets and livestock (Méthot, 2018).
Another major reason why this issue is such a major issue in society today is the lack of knowledge by ordinary people who use these products. Many people believe that products are safe as long as they are sold in stores and no one has warned them about any dangers they might cause. There are no aggressive programs in society aimed at educating people about the dangers these products pose to them.
Another reason why this is a major issue is that people misuse or handle these products the way they should not be handled. This leads to instances where harmful chemicals are inhaled, come into contact with the skin, or even ingested through the mouth.
Consequences of the Problem
Lung cancer has been identified as one of the major dangers humans face using these home-cleaning detergents (Méthot, 2018). When some of these substances mix with water or other substances such as air their emit fumes that when breathed for a long time can lead to lung cancer.
These products have also been associated with other forms of cancer such as skin cancer. Some of the products need to use while wearing gloves but many of the users are oblivious of this fact, which is what makes them expose their skin to the toxic substances hence the increasing cases of cancers in the world today (Méthot, 2018).
In some instances, the use of these cleaning substances at home has led to the deaths of many people, especially children under the age of eight. Some of these detergents are sold in attractive packages that make young children think they are good and edible and this is what leads to many deaths.
Chemical burns are also a major effect of using these substances at home. This happens when a corrosive element or chemical is exposed to the human skin leading to major burns.
IV. Possible Solutions
Education on product ingredients is one of the most effective ways that can be used to help solve this problem. People should be educated on the dangers they expose themselves to when they buy and use these products at home (Méthot, 2018). People should know the most dangerous chemicals and avoid substances that have them as their ingredients. People should also be educated on the use of alternative and healthier products that do not expose them to health issues.
Instruction for the product should be used as a way of curbing this problem. The instructions should be legible to ensure that the substances are not used incorrectly hence increasing the chances of harming the user.
Home cleaning substances and detergents have been identified as hazardous as they contain toxic substances that cause an array of deadly diseases such as cancer. For this reason, the measures discussed above should be used to help educate people and help protect them from the dangers posed by these chemicals.
Barnett, S. (2015). Green Goes with Everything: Simple Steps to a Healthier Life and a Cleaner
Planet. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.
Ed Light, M.S., C.I.H. (2009) Efficacy of “Green” Cleaning Products with respect to Common respiratory viruses and mold Growth: An Annotated bibliography. Journal of Environmental Health, 4, 24-28.
Hayley Williams, Emma Moyns, d. Nicholas Bateman, Simon hl Thomas, John P. Thompson, and j. Allister Vale (2012) Hazard of household cleaning products: An Annotated bibliography. A study undertaken by the UK National Poisons Information Service, 6, 770-776.
Mark, S. (2016). Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products and What’s at Stake for
American Power. New York, NY: Chelsea Green Publishing.
Méthot, D. (2018). A Healthy Life on a Healthy Planet: What We, as Individuals, Can Do to
Make It Happen London, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
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