To spray or not to spray. When it comes to pesticides, that is the question I ask myself every season.
Let’s face it, my generation was brought up on pesticides, flea bombs, ammonias, and toxic cleaning chemicals! I even remember running down the street as a child with all the other kids in the neighborhood having contests about “who can keep up with the bugman’s truck” as it drove down our street spraying toxic, poisonous chemicals in the air.
It’s a new generation today. There is no bugman driving down the streets, but there are still many kinds of pesticides available for our use. Since I am a big believer on trying to keep my family and my pets away from toxic chemicals as much as possible, I have decided to “go clean and green” and live my life toxic-free going forward. Join me if you like!
I recently did some research about pesticides in general, and here are some interesting facts from the Environmental Protection Agency that I thought might be of interest to anyone concerned about the risks of certain pesticides:
The most dangerous household pesticides are foggers, bombs, and aerosols. They give off vapors, mists, and tiny particles that absorb into the body. Pesticides get into the body through the skin, breathing them in, and swallowing them. The residues can stay in the home for weeks, months, and years.
Pesticides can aggravate asthma, allergies, and multiple chemical sensitivity. Pesticide exposure has also been linked to cancers, birth defects, Parkinson’s disease, infertility, and much more.
Children are more vunerable to pesticides. They have less mature defense systems against toxic chemicals, so they will absorb more into their bodies.
Neighbors’ pesticide use can affect you. 85 – 90% of sprays can drift away from where they were applied originally. Sometimes “drifts” can be a mile or more!
If pesticides are not safe, why are they still on the market? Just because they are legal does not mean they are safe…just like alcohol and tobacco. The consumer has no way of knowing about long-term effects of pesticides because the law does not require this information to be on the label. The law also does not require pesticides to be tested for potential harm to human health, wildlife or the environment.
Just because a pesticide does not make you sick right away does not mean that unacceptable exposures are not occurring that may cause delayed effects. Remember those most vulnerable: children, pregnant women, those with weakened immune systems, elderly, asthmatics, and pets.