The typical Canadian home is full of toxic substances, that is to say, chemicals or preparations which present a danger to persons, animals or the environment. We know them well, because we bring them back home, as, among others, household cleaners, detergents, furniture polish. Others, such as lead-based paint used in older homes, are at risk less obvious.
Read the labels of household chemicals. See the information on job security and look for symbols like: "Warning," "Warnings" and "Danger" (the latter being most important). Use them carefully following the instructions and keep the product in its original container out of reach of children and animals. Do not use these products and do not store with food and water intend for human or animal consumption.
Discard products that are no longer supplies the following safety tips (check to see if your community offers Pickup Day "hazardous waste"). Store flammable products away from your living space and your appliances, and keep all toxic substances out of reach of children and animals.
Look at some hazardous materials on how to use them safely.
Lead is dangerous when inhaled or swallowed. Exposure to lead can damage the brain or nervous system and cause learning disabilities. Lead poisoning can also cause anemia. In Canada, lead poisoning is still a problem for children who are more susceptible because their growing bodies absorb lead more easily.
The interior of many homes built before 1960 was painted with paint containing lead (since then, this type of paint was banned for homes). Lead is also found in the soil around the house whose exterior was brushed with a lead paint in household dust or flaking paint in poor condition, and the old furniture and toys painted. The lead-based paint flaking or cracks, or one that was used on surfaces and objects that young children may suck or bite (such as window sills or ramps) is a real danger. In general, lead-based paint in good condition poses no problems. If you have any concerns, consult your doctor and ask for a blood test that will assess the amount of lead in your home and your family. Do not try to remove yourself lead paint - if not done properly, the situation could get worse.
It may be that there is lead in your water if your water pipes are lead or lead-based alloy. Contact the Department of Health and ask to test your water.
Products used in home
We use many products for our homes and clothes stay clean and smell good, including disinfectant, glass cleaner, laundry, water, bleach, air fresheners, polish the metal , detachment, carpet cleaner, the toilet bowl cleaner and furniture polish.
These products contain various chemicals that can be hazardous to human health when they are not used properly or in case of overexposure. For example, mixing bleach with ammonia can produce a deadly gas. The ammonia is in the glass cleaner may irritate eyes and lungs and cause headaches. The hydrochloric acid content in the toilet bowl cleaner toilet can cause burns or gastrointestinal problems if ingested. A splash can blind a person. Some detergents can cause vomiting, shock and convulsions if swallowed.
Be careful when using these products - you must follow the instructions carefully and take precautions such as wearing rubber gloves, ventilate the room where you are and know what to do in case of injury. Make sure the cap of these products is in place when not in use. Store them out of reach of children and animals.
Products found in the garage and garden
Listed below are some of the products considered dangerous and that we find in garages across the country, antifreeze, motor oil, batteries, paint and paint thinner, insecticides, windshield washer fluid, pool tablets, insect repellent.
Antifreeze, for example, cause poisoning if swallowed, and can damage the heart, kidneys and brain. (If you spill, clean the site so that the animals, who like sweet smells, do not absorb the product by licking.) Motor oil contains heavy metals that can damage both the nerves that the kidneys. As for batteries, sulfuric acid in it can cause blindness and severe burns. Organophosphates and carbonates found in insecticides can cause headaches, muscle spasms, nausea and dizziness.
To avoid accidents, ensure that containers are not leaking and that caps are screwed, and discard the containers by following the safety rules - consult your public health department.
For more information on the safe use of household chemicals, contact your local poison control center.
If you want to reduce the number of chemicals used at home, think about the natural solutions. Decades ago, the household cleaning products consisted of baking soda, vinegar and lemon juice. Here are some examples:
- baking soda deodorizes, cleans without scratches and removes stains. For example, lead to a drain, you must first use a plunger and pour a half cup of baking soda and half a cup of white vinegar into the drain, and then the cover. (Do not use this solution after using an unblocker commercial, it would be dangerous);
- Vinegar is an excellent glass cleaner when mixed with water. The undiluted white vinegar also cleans stainless steel;
- lemon juice mixed with water is also a good window cleaner.