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April Fresh or Potentially Toxic?

By Nadine M. Rosin For The Dog Files

Do you use chemically scented laundry detergent? Fabric softener? Dryer sheets? Think about it- If you use these products, you are absorbing the following chemicals through your skin (our biggest organ) all day long via your clothes, then throughout the night via your bedding, and finally, after a nice, hot shower with totally open pores, via that “april fresh” bath towel. These are the types of things we as consumers must start being aware of, because for the sake of “convenience” and some company’s bottom line, we are unnecessarily overburdening our immune systems and those of our beloved children and pets.

Bodies don’t “get” cancer, they DEVELOP it. When the immune system is overburdened with chemicals, it can no longer maintain its natural state of vibrant health. When it is overburdened and unbalanced with unhealthy food and environmental toxins, it develops disease. When I do Toxic-free Living consultations with pet parents, even the most aware are often amazed at the amount of hidden toxins they are unknowingly exposing their entire family to. Kind of like the “skinny photo” taped to the refrigerator door: we see it for about 2 minutes and then rarely notice it ever again. Investigate. Read labels. Consult an expert. Just because something is sold in a grocery store, doesn’t mean it’s safe to use especially for years on end.

Chemicals Found in Fabric Softeners/Dryer Sheets

Chemicals found in fabric softeners by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) “Identification of Polar Volatile Organic Compounds in Consumer Products and Common Microenvironments,” 1991 Reference: Lance Wallace, EPA. Phone (703) 341-7509

Alpha-Terpineol: Causes CNS (central nervous system) disorders… “highly irritating to mucous membranes” …”Aspiration into the lungs can produce pneumonitis or even fatal edema.” Can also cause “excitement, ataxia (loss of muscular coordination), hypothermia, CNS and respiratory depression, and headache.” “Prevent repeated or prolonged skin contact.”

Benzyl Acetate: Carconigenic (linked to pancreatic cancer). “From vapors: irritating to eyes and respiratory passages, exciting cough.” “In mice: hyperanemia of the lungs.” “Can be absorbed through the skin causing systemic effects.” “Do not flush to sewer.”

Benzyl Alcohol: Causes CNS disorders …”irritating to the upper respiratory tract” …”headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drop in blood pressure, CNS depression, and death in severe cases due to respiratory failure.”

Camphor: Causes CNS disorders. On EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. Symptoms: “local irritant and CNS stimulant” …”readily absorbed through body tissues” …”irritation of eyes, nose, and throat” …”dizziness, confusion, nausea, twitching muscles and convulsions”. “Avoid inhalation of vapors.”

Chloroform: Neurotoxic. Anesthetic. Carcinogenic. On EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. “Avoid contact with eyes, skin, clothing. Do not breathe vapors …Inhalation of vapors may cause headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, irritation of respiratory tract and loss of consciousness.” “Inhalation can be fatal.” “Chronic effects of overexposure may include kidney and/or liver damage.” “Medical conditions generally aggravated by exposure: kidney disorders, liver disorders, heart disorders, skin disorders.” “Conditions to avoid: Heat…” Listed on California’s Proposition 65.

Ethyl Acetate: Narcotic. On EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. “…Irritating to the eyes and respiratory tract” …”may cause headache and narcosis (stupor)” …”may cause anemia with leukocytosis and damage to liver and kidneys”. “Wash thoroughly after handling.”

Limonene: Carcinogenic. “Prevent its contact with skin or eyes because it is an irritant and sensitizer.” “Always wash thoroughly after using this material and before eating, drinking …applying cosmetics. Do not inhale limonene vapor.”

Linalool: Narcotic. Causes CNS disorders. …”Respiratory disturbances” …”Attracts bees.” “In animal tests: ataxic gait, reduced spontaneous motor activity and depression …depressed heart activity …development of respiratory disturbances leading to death.”

Pentane: “Danger – Harmful if inhaled …Avoid breathing vapor.” “Inhalation of vapors may cause headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, irritation of respiratory tract and loss of consciousness. Repeated inhalation of vapors may cause CNS depression. Contact can cause eye irritation. Prolonged exposure may cause dermatitis (skin rash).”

CNS = Central Nervous System – Your brain and spine. CNS disorders include: Alzheimer’s Disease, Attention Deficit Disorder, Dementia, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s Disease, Seizures, Strokes, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

CNS exposure symptoms include: aphasia, blurred vision, disorientation, dizziness, headaches, hunger, memory loss, numbness in face, pain in neck and spine.

Natural markets like Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and numerous online eco-product companies sell safe and chemical free laundry soaps. A little white vinegar added to the rinse cycle will safely soften clothes. A thin, knotted cotton sock filled with a handful of lavender flowers from the garden or health food store with eliminate static cling. Easy. Inexpensive. Safe. Please be safe.

Nadine M. Rosin, Holistic Pets/Toxic-free Living Consultant, Pet Bereavement Facilitator, author & speaker.

Available for phone consultations, your next function or fundraiser

The Healing Art Of Pet Parenthood
A book about the human-animal bond, healing cancer holistically, and a new take on pet loss.

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A blog with answers & information about natural healing, grief, and parenting our beloved pets.

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The Mission Behind the Book :

Helping pet parents realize we may be unconsciously contributing to the skyrocketing increase of cancer in our pets by unknowingly creating highly toxic environments in our homes.

Providing comfort, camaraderie, and validation for pet parents experiencing the devastating loss of a beloved pet.

Helping to remove the words, “It’s just a dog/cat” from the lips of non pet parents everywhere.