Potential health hazards could be lurking around your house. The good news is that they are easy to to uncover, and relatively inexpensive to correct.
Here are some of the most common household hazards that may be lingering in your home.
The sad truth is that unless you’re diligent about sanitizing them often, kitchen sponges often carry more germs than toilet seats. Sponges can harbor more than 100,000 bacteria, including food-borne diseases that were wiped off the counter. Toss them in the dishwasher regularly, replace them, or zap them in the microwave for two minutes.
Dirty Air Ducts:
Dirty air ducts contain dust, pollen, bacteria, and even mold, and the contaminated air is recycled and circulated throughout your home, day after day.
Radon is a natural radioactive gas that you can’t see, smell, or taste. It is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. You can purchase a do-it-yourself radon test at a home improvement store and get the results in a matter of days. Homes in certain parts of the country, and those with dirt basements, are particularly susceptible to the gas.
In a major study, leading scientific experts warned of adverse health effects from bisphenol-A (BPA), a chemical found in water bottles, cups, baby bottles, tin cans, and many other commonly used household products. BPA is a hormone-mimicking chemical used in polycarbonate plastics. They often have a #7 recycling code. In animal tests, it has caused problems ranging from an increase in the incidence of prostate and breast cancer, to early onset of puberty in girls, to diabetes and obesity.
Lead is another invisible threat in your home, and one that’s easy to discover. It is a potent neurotoxin that can affect the brain and can result in a lower IQ, memory problems, or increased aggression. Lead can be found in old paint, pipes, and even soil. You can have your home tested for lead by a professional, or you can purchase a lead test kit and swab surfaces for evidence of the chemical.
Basements are often the culprits of mold spores, which can produce allergens, irritants, and in some cases, potentially harmful toxins. Black mold is an especially dangerous type of mold. If you discover mold in your house (or suspect it could be in your house), you should promptly clean it up and fix the water problem that is causing the mold.
Aluminum found in pots and pans can leach into your food, and when ingested, can damage your kidneys and liver and weaken your bones. A growing number of researchers say the metal could cause Alzheimer’s disease. Glass, cast iron, stainless steel, and porcelain cookware are good alternatives to aluminum.
Sheets that have permanent press finishes which are commonly used by manufacturers in order to minimize wrinkling usually contain formaldehyde, which is a known carcinogen. Formaldehyde becomes a gas at room temperature and new or unwashed sheets can release formaldehyde fumes, causing flu-like symptoms. Consider staying away from permanent press fabrics, and opt for organic cotton or bamboo sheets instead.
Cockroaches carry a range of bacteria, including salmonella, staphylococcus, and streptococcus. You may need professional help to rid your house of roaches, or you can try to do it yourself. Make sure the kitchen trash can is emptied regularly. Do not keep newspapers, cardboard boxes, or magazines stacked inside the house. Try not to leave pet food out, and repair any holes in the walls.
Maid Brigade House Cleaning Services cares about your health. Share your ideas and tips with us. For more information about healthy green living, please log on to greencleancertified.com or maidbrigade.com.