I've posted about fabric softener before, but I felt compelled to revisit it again this week. In the last few months I've traveled a lot and stayed in various homes and hotels. I've found that even worse than pesticide or perfume exposure, what bothers me even more is toxic fabric softener. This product contains so many harmful chemicals, including known carcinogens (cancer-causing agents). It is mind-boggling to me that anyone still uses this product. But I realize that many people simply don't know what's in it and how dangerous it is.
If there was ONE change I could convince people to make for their health, it would be - say goodbye to fabric softener (or switch to a natural alternative...see the article below).
For those of you who understand this issue, please continue to share the facts with others as you have opportunity. And if you've never heard about this, please consider the following information and make an informed decision for your own health and family.
Dangers of Fabric Softener
The facts on fabric softeners are undeniable, yet millions of people still use this dangerous product.
Some people simply have no idea about the harmful chemicals they're exposing themselves to. Other people ignore the dangers, saying, "I want my clothes to be soft."
It grieves me to think that anyone would chose "soft" clothes over protecting their families' health from carcinogens, respiratory irritants, chemicals and toxins.
Unfortunately, the people who use fabric softener aren't the only ones who suffer from this unhealthy choice.
- For years I felt the harmful effects of my neighbor's fabric softener almost daily as it came from her dryer vent through our front and back yards.
- Many children, who have no idea of the dangers, are wearing toxic clothes laundered with fabric softener.
- People who work in hospitality industries are exposed to these toxic products daily.
So if fabric softener is so dangerous, why is it still sold everywhere? Where is regulation, you ask? I can't answer why so many toxic products are still approved for sale, but I can assure you that the research has been done and the facts are clear.
Fabric softener contains known carcinogens (cancer-causing agents), respiratory irritants, toxins that cause nervous system disorders, as well as substances that are listed on the EPA's Hazardous Waste list.
Fabric softener is a toxic cocktail that becomes even more dangerous when heated, and which is made to last a VERY long time. It absorbs into the skin (through clothes and bedding) and wreaks all kinds of havoc in the body.
If you know someone with asthma, this is the first change I recommend for them to make. One of my friends said that after quitting using fabric softener, her asthma improved dramatically! Another friend had chronic hives for months, which completely cleared up once he stopped using fabric softener. The list of possible problems from using fabric softener goes on and on, not to mention the long-term effects it has on people.
I hope by now I've either convinced you to avoid this harmful product, or inspired you to share the facts with others you know who still use fabric softener.
For more information on this topic, here's a helpful article by Dr. Mercola that shares some of the dangers of fabric softener and also lists easy and inexpensive natural alternatives.
There are a lot of unavoidable toxins in our environment. Let's not add anything unnecessarily to that load. Let's keep spreading the word so that more people can make healthy choices and live well.