This is probably the number one product that everyone has in their home in one form or another. For the past decade, Stapleton has conducted a series of studies identifying the types and concentrations of flame-retardants used in consumer products. The good news is that newer laws have helped limit the use of flame-retardants in furniture. Those toxic chemicals, shed into the air by sofas and other furniture containing the foam, were linked to a host of health problems including fertility issues, neurological deficits, developmental delays and cancer. Perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) are used in stain-resistant fabrics often included in furniture as well as in non-stick cookware like Teflon. Please attempt to sign up again. The National Cancer Institute states that research links formaldehyde exposure to several cancers, including nasopharyngeal cancer and leukemia. It is These exposures may include substances, such as the chemicals in tobacco smoke, or radiation, such as ultraviolet rays from the sun. Here's How That Could Play Out in the Courtroom, Sign up to receive the top stories you need to know now on politics, health and more, © 2021 TIME USA, LLC. Chlorine is used to bleach wood pulp and remove mold. Cancer is a complex group of diseases with many possible causes. Recently, i bought 2 parson chairs from Walmart. I was happy, until I go home put it together, on the bottom of the chair there a Cancer Warning: This product contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer. All rights reserved. In the article, "Twelve Highly Toxic Chemicals to Banish from Your Home," Natural News reports on chemicals commonly found around the house that could cause health problems. So they’re often easy to spot, she says. VOCs can cause eye, nose, and throat irritation as well as headaches, loss of coordination, and nausea. Air Fresheners/Scented Products. There’s nothing fishy about the benefits of omega-3s. PBDEs include pentabromodiphenyl ether (c-pentaBDE), octabromodiphenyl ether (c-octaBDE), and decabromodiphenyl ether (c-decaBDE). Ammonia is commonly found in glass cleaners and, as such, may be used on furniture. An unexpected error has occurred with your sign up. “There are concerns about endocrine disruption and neurotoxic effects, especially for pregnant women and children,” says Asa Bradman, associate director of the Center for Environmental Research and Children’s Health at the University of California, Berkeley. You can unsubscribe at any time. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Landing the Big Fish of Body Health, Itchy Heads: It's National Head Lice Prevention Month, Gaming with Friends Can Combat Loneliness, That Rush You Get Hearing a Favorite Tune Is Real, Love Social Media? 1. Do you know how to prevent head lice infestations? From there, you or your children may be exposed by breathing them in or putting something in your mouth—fingers, a toy—that has been in contact with the chemical-coated dust particles. Cases of lung cancer … Getty Images; Illustration by Marisa Gertz for TIME. She recommends asking lots of questions before buying a new piece of furniture. Lung damage and death may occur after exposure to very high concentrations of ammonia. Videos are often thought of as being a waste of time, but there may be some benefits to online gaming, such as social connections to combat loneliness. Learn about wood dust, which can raise the risk of cancers of the paranasal sinuses and nasal cavity. How does social media make you feel? Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) asserts that more research is needed to assess the human health effects of exposure to phthalates, some types of phthalates have affected the reproductive system of laboratory animals. O. Did You Know These 9 Facts About Heart Attacks? These chemicals have been associated with serious health issues, including respiratory problems, neurological issues, skin irritation, and cancer. Twelve Highly Toxic Chemicals to Banish from Your Home, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states, Top 18 Best Weight Loss Pills For Women In 2020, 9 Amazing Facts About Protein Coffee and How It Can Change Your Life. California’s Proposition 65, also called the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, first became law in the state in 1986. This particular chemical is on California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer. . Did you know that a heart attack isn't the same thing as a cardiac arrest? A major source is the furniture. But others are the result of environmental exposures that damage DNA. Bags of potato chips are seen on a grocery store shelf on September 30, 2002 in Chicago, Illinois. Ask a public health scientist about couches and cancer, and you’re sure to hear about a State of California law enacted back in 1975. Bradman says these flame-retardants work their way out of your furniture and into the dust that coats your floors and other surfaces. Cancer is just one of many health concerns linked to the chemical treatments used in furniture. This new study shows how your Facebook feed may be affecting your emotional health. Birnbaum says reforms to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) could lead to safer standards and more before-market testing of chemicals used in consumer goods. But the average American is exposed to hundreds of chemical compounds on a daily basis. A recent meta-study published by the American Cancer Society suggests that over 200 chemicals found in everyday products cause breast cancer in animals. Devra Lee Davis is director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. Used as flame retardants, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are not chemically bound to plastics, foam, fabrics, or other products in which they are used, so this means they are more likely to leach out of them. For instance, although they are most commonly found in air freshners, phthalates are also an ingredient in vinyl, wood varnishes, and lacquers. The hormone disruptors are in house dust and in the air and include chemicals in plastics and detergents. Upholstered furniture is heavily sprayed with chemicals which are known carcinogens to make them flame retardant. “Later on it was found that these flame retardants could migrate out of the products and into people.”. Flame Retardants. Since companies aren’t required to list those chemicals, you have no way of knowing what you’re putting on your skin. High amounts of wood dust are produced in sawmills, and in the furniture-making, cabinet-making, and carpentry industries. The study was carried out by an international panel of experts and was funded by a large number of foundations and government medical programs across the globe. The National Cancer Institute states that research links formaldehyde exposure to several cancers, including nasopharyngeal cancer and leukemia. Over the next decade, the International Energy Agency expects renewable energy to account for 80% of the world's power consumption. That doesn’t mean newer couches can’t contain flame-retardants. 11 Furniture and cabinet making: ... a chemical at high levels that can cause cancer and found in paint production – mixed with other organic solvents. PCE has been banned in Canada and Europe. Thanks to greater public awareness, and research showing couches don’t need to be infused with flame-retardants to be safe, “these chemicals are under control now in new furniture,” Blum says. Since 2003, azodyes have been restricted in textile and leather articles that come into contact with the skin. That law, called technical bulletin 117, or “TB117”, required furniture manufacturers to treat their products with flame retardant chemicals, mainly to protect against fires started by neglected cigarettes. Bradman says it’s difficult to pinpoint the precise toxicological and dose-response effects of these chemicals. But in older couches, flame retardants are “pretty much always present,” Bradman says. Some anti-microbial treatments are also concerning, Blum says. The brand name was Better Homes. The cheapest way for furniture makers do that is by using chemicals, many of which have been linked to cancer, reproductive problems and other health concerns, but are not banned. “Most manufacturers didn’t want to have two production lines—one for California and one for the rest of the country—so after the regulation was passed most furniture included flame retardants,” says Heather Stapleton, associate professor and program chair of environmental health at Duke University. Researchers found traces of toxins in the blood or urine of children living in homes with sofas containing flame-retardant chemicals or vinyl floors. Formaldehyde, although it is a known carcinogen, is used in carpentry, soaps, detergents, cabinetrym and glues. Perchloroethylene (PCE) is most commonly used in the dry cleaning process, yet textile mills — makers of rubber coatings — also use this chemical. An English physician noted that a large number of chimney sweeps had cancer of the scrotum due to exposure to soot, which contains chemicals known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Wood dust is one of the oldest occupational exposures known to man, and it's still very important to today for those who have jobs ranging from cabinetry to mill workers. But free-floating, harmful chemicals are also emitted from the furniture, wallpaper, flooring, and household items around us. California updated TB117 in 2013 and again in 2014; the new regulations make it less likely that flame-retardant chemicals will be added to the filling materials of sofas and other household furniture items, Stapleton says. “These chemicals, particularly fluorinated compounds, never break down in the environment—never—and they’ve been linked with liver and kidney cancer, and reproductive and developmental problems,” Blum explains. People can avoid some cancer-causing exposures, such as tobacco smoke and the sun’s rays. Or what to do if you find the critters? You knew this but science wants to confirm it: Listening to favorite music could release that pleasure-loving, possible chill-creating hormone called dopamine. Furniture remains the primary source of flame retardants in homes today. When it comes to stain-repellant and antimicrobial treatments, a lot of furniture sellers advertise those as perks or add-ons. Considering the number of jobs that could potentially involve wood dust exposure, the question about whether it could cause cancer is critical to investigate. But as of today, it’s very difficult to keep all these chemicals out of your home and your body. It was called The “It’s scary and it’s tough, because there are no simple ways to avoid these things,” Stapleton says. The main effects of extended long-term exposure to chlorine gas include diseases of the lung and tooth corrosion. In short, the FDA is reviewing all of the available safety and effectiveness data in order to evaluate triclosan. In fact, they may be emitted by a wide array of products, including paints and lacquers, paint strippers, cleaning supplies, household products such as varnishes and wax, cleaning and disinfecting, products, building materials (plywood and particleboard) and furnishings, office equipment such as copiers and printers, carbonless copy paper, graphics and craft materials including glues and adhesives. The EPA is concerned that certain PBDEs may be toxic to both the environment and humans. Manufacturers or sellers should also be able to provide that info, she says. So, too, are stain and water-repelling treatments. Some furniture is made with chemicals on the Proposition 65 list. Because industrial chemical use is minimally regulated, a lab at Duke University is offering free analyses of furniture for potentially hazardous compounds. Some are suspected or known to cause cancer in humans. Years of research suggest that vision, lung function, immune system performance, and even sperm count can all be improved by omega-3s. * The request timed out and you did not successfully sign up. Meanwhile, phthalate exposure is already widespread in the population. And if it causes cancer in California why is it safe enough to be sold in Arizona? To avoid flame-retardants, check out a furniture piece’s label or tags. Has the Real Power of Solar Energy Arrived? © 2021 Medical Daily LLC. “And studies have shown that 90 percent of the American population has these flame retardant chemicals in their bodies.”. “Exposure to PBDEs in the womb and through nursing has caused thyroid effects and neurobehavioral alterations in newborn animals, but not birth defects. There may be information in a checked-box section stating that the item does not contain flame-retardants. Apple picking could be a good outing to take this fall, as it lends itself to social distancing. As awareness of these chemicals dangers grows, it should become easier to find safe furniture pieces. Studies have linked exposure before birth to lower birth weight in both animal and human studies. Scientists have made progress in understanding … Forty-one percent of the couches contained chlorinated Tris (TDCPP), a cancer-causing flame retardant removed from baby pajamas in the 1970s, and 17 percent contained the worldwide-banned chemical pentaBDE, the Duke University and University of California, Berkeley, researchers said. I believe this is due to the Proposition 65 in California, make many many household products have this warning label, I heard even funiture have this labels. Acetaldehyde is a chemical used in the production of perfumes (think “new-car” or “new-furniture” smell), polyester resins, dyes, rubber production, and in tanning agent production. 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