How to protect your family from toxic chemicals

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Keeping your family safe from chemical toxins is likely something important to you. It is important to note that everything in your home does not have to be organic to achieve this goal. In fact, it only takes a few small changes in the daily activities of you and your family to reduce the dangers from exposure to chemical toxins.

The bad news is you and your family are completely surrounded by toxins. And despite taking all the necessary precautions, there are times we will be affected by these environmental toxins. However, you can greatly reduce the toxin load experienced by your family through the following considerations.

Fresh air
If you are fortunate enough to live in an area that boasts of high air quality, there is no better way to take advantage of this fact than to open your windows to dilute any pollution of the air in your home. When purchasing large items like a mattress or other furniture for your home, you and your family will benefit from allowing the piece to rid itself of any chemicals present by leaving it in the direct path of the outside air before putting it in its rightful place inside your home.

Become a label reader
Your family will benefit if you choose cleaning and personal care products that do not include chemicals like triclosan, oxybenzone, and parabens. These chemicals have been known to disrupt endocrine systems in animals and are a danger to humans. Look for products that specifically say they are free of these chemicals on the label. It is important to remember ingredient lists are not always reliable because it is not required that companies disclose fragrance ingredients. Homemade cleaning products can be made with a combination of lemon, water, and vinegar.

Take off your shoes
Pesticides can be transferred to the interior of your home on the bottom of your shoes for as long as a week after they are sprayed. You can eliminate the majority of this potential transference by taking off your shoes when you enter your home and leaving them at the door. Placing a sticky mat outside your front door will also help to decrease the number of contaminants tracked into your home buy both you and your pet.

Do not heat plastics
Adding heat to plastic weakens the material and allows for leakage of harmful materials. You should avoid putting plastic in dishwashers and microwaves. Plastic devices that need to be sterilized should be washed in hot, soapy water.

Be mindful of dust
Dust in the house can contain chemicals. At least once a week, you should use a damp dust rag or mop to rid your home of dust. A vacuum with a HEPA filter will work well for homes with carpets.

Sunscreen
Sunscreen is necessary to provide your child with adequate protection from the sun. You can decrease the amount of sunscreen needed by dressing your children in UV protective clothing. Spray-on sunscreen should be avoided due to the possibility of the child breathing in chemical particles.