Antique Clocks, Mirroea, Barometers, Thermometers, and Lamps While the chemical benzene is commonly associated with vehicle exhaust and coal emissions, it is also found in detergents and dyes, which could be used on your furniture. This would include a specific one for Grenfell residents and firefighters to detect the effects of exposure to the smoke from the devastating fire in west London in June 2017, which killed 72 people. While the EPA hasn’t classified it as a carcinogen, it states that studies have found, “an increased incidence of nasal cavity tumors … observed in rats exposed by inhalation.” (7), Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), is a category of toxic flame retardants, used to minimize the chance of fire spreading should your couch or mattress catch on fire. (Read This Next: 4 Big Problems With Microplastics (& 4 Natural, Toxic-Free Alternatives)) Chocolates and beer: Buying from Belgium after Brexit. reducing the use of chemical flame retardants in domestic furniture, changing the labelling system to spell out which chemicals are in consumer products. Some are even known to cause cancer. reducing the use of chemical flame retardants in domestic furniture; changing the labelling system to spell out which chemicals are in consumer products. It is released into the air from some furniture products. Before you panic, know that there are several ways to limit your exposure to these chemicals from your furniture. Phthalates are a family of chemicals added to many plastics to make them flexible. Select flame-retardant-free foam products. How safe are takeaways and supermarket deliveries? My search for truly safe leather furniture started out a little more optimistically then it ended. It wants to see a biomonitoring programme to find out levels of chemical exposure among people in the UK. Banana Bread French Toast (Gluten Free, Paleo). But some fear the regulations need updating as a body of evidence over the risks of certain flame retardants grows. While particleboard is nice in the fact that it uses recycled timber or timber waste, it’s components can be very toxic. Its website claims that its products were manufactured without toxic byproducts, including flame retardants, PBDEs, plasticizers, phthalates, persistent organic pollutants and polyvinyl chloride. Formaldehyde is used in making resins such as urea-formaldehyde that are used in adhesives for some composite wood products (particle board, fiberboard, and plywood) used to manufacture furniture. She is a dedicated researcher in all areas of ancestral health, a certified specialist in fitness nutrition, personal trainer, and professional almond milk latte addict. PCO cleaners in particular use UV light to change gas-based pollutants into harmless products. Just be sure to change the filters frequently. For policy-makers, there are competing risks. They use polyester, solid wood, and steel in their designs. They are considered major endocrine disruptors that … IKEA’s specification documents for its suppliers require various degrees of ingredient disclosure, depending upon the type of product. In fact, there are certain harmful chemicals -- known as volatile organic compounds, or VOCs -- that are used to treat furniture and that have been linked to respiratory and nervous system damage. Other side effects include: adverse effects on developing fetuses, light-headedness, drowsiness, headaches, and effects in the liver, kidneys, immune system and central nervous system. .css-1xgx53b-Link{font-family:ReithSans,Helvetica,Arial,freesans,sans-serif;font-weight:700;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;color:#FFFFFF;}.css-1xgx53b-Link:hover,.css-1xgx53b-Link:focus{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Read about our approach to external linking. Avoid furniture with stain-guard and water-repellent treatments. Perhaps you’re decorating a new home, or finally treating yourself to a new (amazingly comfortable!) Europe's slow start: How many have had the jab? Many scientific studies show that flame retardant chemicals pollute the environment and contaminate the food chain. Residents have reported the emergence of the "Grenfell cough" and health problems including vomiting, coughing up blood, skin complaints and breathing difficulties, the committee said. Formaldehyde based resins are used to bind the particles together. If you liked that article, you'll absolutely LOVE our daily newsletter -- with more recipes, workouts, and tips and tricks to be the healthiest version of yourself. Except as otherwise provided in subsection b. of this section, it shall be an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) iPlayerThe scary science behind Stranger Things, The teen who took his life over a debt. Unable to focus? if(typeof(dataLayer) === 'object'){ Most sofas contain petroleum-based polyurethane foam with toxic flame retardant chemicals, formaldehyde releasing frames, leather or fabric with toxic chemical residues or fumes, toxic glues or finish. Most of its effects involve the respiratory system, and include coughing and inflammation. These treatments often contain perfluorinated chemicals, or PFCs, which have been linked to cancer, reproductive problems, birth defects, developmental delays and immune system suppression. They are considered major endocrine disruptors that interfere with natural hormone regulation and production. Be sure to keep your home well-ventilated as well, with periodic airing out to reduce the accumulation of chemicals in the air. Innovation Furniture was founded in Denmark in the 1980s. Other recommendations from the committee include: Chief medical officer Sally Davies, in her 2017 report, called for other materials and manufacturing techniques to be explored to find a natural flame-resistant alternative. [/tweet_quote], In reality, the compounds that make furniture soft, sleek, or “new” smelling, actually belong to a class of chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Struggling to lose weight? And on the other, they want as few flame retardant chemicals as possible - they are nasty chemicals and can actually make fires more lethal. Toxins can be lurking in your favorite couch, mattress and even bookcase. A major source is the furniture. [tweet_quote]When you buy furniture, you also purchase a host of dangerous chemicals hidden in their glues, glosses, and fabrics. They leach out of foams, plastics, and fabrics and pollute the air, while also accumulating in the environment. Investing in a great air filter, like this one or this one, can go a long way in removing dangerous chemicals hanging around in the air from your furniture. Formaldehyde is present in some particle board, paints, lacqueurs and coatings. (12), Perchloroethylene is commonly used for dry cleaning fabrics and metal degreasing. 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. (8). }, Category: HealthTag: allergies health risks. In 2017, chief medical officer Sally Davies said there was no known "causative linkage" between exposure from the environment and adverse health outcomes, but said phasing them out should be encouraged. But first, let’s take a look at some of the hidden toxins in furniture, so you know what you’re dealing with. .css-14iz86j-BoldText{font-weight:bold;}Britons are being exposed to a "cocktail of chemicals" from birth in our own homes, with .css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link{color:#3F3F42;}.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited{color:#696969;}.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited{font-weight:bolder;border-bottom:1px solid #BABABA;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link:hover,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited:hover,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link:focus,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited:focus{border-bottom-color:currentcolor;border-bottom-width:2px;color:#B80000;}@supports (text-underline-offset:0.25em){.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited{border-bottom:none;-webkit-text-decoration:underline #BABABA;text-decoration:underline #BABABA;-webkit-text-decoration-thickness:1px;text-decoration-thickness:1px;-webkit-text-decoration-skip-ink:none;text-decoration-skip-ink:none;text-underline-offset:0.25em;}.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link:hover,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited:hover,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:link:focus,.css-yidnqd-InlineLink:visited:focus{-webkit-text-decoration-color:currentcolor;text-decoration-color:currentcolor;-webkit-text-decoration-thickness:2px;text-decoration-thickness:2px;color:#B80000;}}MPs raising particular concerns about the flame-retardant chemicals used in home furnishings. For now, however, here are some thoughts on avoiding the cheap toxic furniture without paying top dollar for toxic-free furniture. It’s frightening to learn that the synthetic foam in conventional upholstered furniture contains a high percentage of fire retardants; as well as formaldehyde, stain repellents, fire retardants and other toxic chemicals on the fabric surface. You may know to test vintage furniture for lead paint, but that's not the only place toxins hide. The manufacturing process included discharging water that was tainted with trichloroethylene (TCE), a common toxic chemical associated with dry cleaning. The result is dust containing fire retardant chemicals polluting the indoor air which everyone breaths. While many fabrics are created with synthetic dyes, not all of them contain Benzene, so it’s important to check with the manufacturer. They can affect development in children, resulting in changes in male hormone production, altered sexual differentiation, and changes to reproductive organs. Perfluorooctanoic acid is a chemical historically used in carpets, leathers, and upholstering to make them waterproof and stain-resistant. Coronavirus: How safe are takeaways and supermarket deliveries? In addition, prenatal exposure to some phthalates has resulted in deformities of the genitals and anus. There are a few simple methods you can employ to get rid of the chemical smell … To see additional chemicals, visit the EPA’s factsheet. But that also means that the smoke that is produced can be more toxic - with the volumes of carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide, in particular, being increased. iPlayerThe teen who took his life over a debt. 1. The foam in the cushions is made of petroleum-based polyurethane, a highly flammable product. (2) This doesn’t even include sofas, vehicle furniture, and so on. (19) Purchasing a charcoal filter for your home may help remove some of the VOCs lingering in the air in your home environment. Levin, of Oakland, had her 20-year-old couch tested for toxic chemicals and was upset to learn it contains two flame retardants - V6 and TCEP, tris (2-carboxyethyl) phosphine. On the one hand, they need to make sure that sofas are as fire-safe as possible. Take this a step further and air out your home afterwards. Once in the body, they can stay there for several years. Upholstered furniture is heavily sprayed with chemicals which are known carcinogens to make them flame retardant. In fact, the EPA has classified benzene as a “known human carcinogen for all routes of exposure.” (6), Vinyl Acetate is a chemical used in the production of polyvinyl, adhesives, paints, films, and lacquers. Like us on Facebook for delicious recipes and a lot more! It’s your furniture! (14), Many VOCs are acidic in nature. On Feb. 7, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed legislation regulating the presence of toxic chemicals in children’s products and apparel. (3, 4), 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. An Act concerning certain products made with flame retardant chemicals and supplementing P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.). In paints, clothes, food packaging, home insulation, toys, electronic goods and car seats. The most common flame retardants work by interfering with the chemistry of burning. These chemicals help to prevent ignition from stray cigarettes or neglected candles and slow the spread of fire. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Benzene is often found in dyes, waxes and resins found within furniture. However, most sofas release toxic chemicals that is harmful to our health. Megan is an inquisitive nutrition and wellness writer harboring an editorial love affair with the decadent and the nutritious. Many main stream brands have stopped using flame retardants in their sofas including: IKEA, Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, and Room & Board. Grab Our FREE Guide To Fixing Your Hormones By Clicking Here! Charcoal has been used in the past to help remove dangerous gases during warfare due to its highly absorbent nature. IKEA is a great affordable option for safer furniture. She added that the concern for human health was long-term interference with the thyroid hormone system because of some structural similarity between the chemicals and thyroid hormones. Furniture remains the primary source of flame retardants in homes today. Buying new furniture is an exciting time. It can also be transported long distances and remains persistent in its environment. iPlayer, The teen who took his life over a debt. This was how an environmental journalist colleague of mine described it to Mary Creagh MP, Chair of the Environmental Committee in 2018. Trichloroethylene is a VOC used as a solvent in dry cleaning and metal degreasing. Usually, a non-toxic sofa with more non toxic materials will cost more. 'My baby screamed when she saw new faces', Sex workers object to card firms boycotting Pornhub. Long-term exposure could mean cancer, since formaldehyde is also classified as a human carcinogen by several agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The government said it would respond before 25 July. The furniture is available exclusively through the company’s online store. Let the baking soda sit for as long as possible, then vacuum it up. Researchers involved in one study, recommended purple waffle plant (Hemigraphis alternata), English ivy, purple heart, foxtail fern and wax plant for their superior air-filtering abilities. You’re not paying the real cost of cheap toxic products. After purchasing new furniture, it would be wise to let it “off-gas” or “air out” outside or in a garage with lots of ventilation. Furniture made of particleboard, fiberboard, and plywood often contain urea-formaldehyde glues. But note that other chemicals, like formaldehyde and synthetic latex, may still be in the furniture. She then asked us to write a paper for the EAC and on the strength of that, the Committee launched an Inquiry into toxic chemicals in everyday life, with particular attention on the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988. Both gases are poisonous and, in many fires, inhalation of either gas proves to be a more deadly killer than the flames themselves. As for furniture, they can be found in floor tiles, furniture upholstery, carpet backings, and packaging. To do this, simply sprinkle baking soda over furniture or carpets and use the brush attachment on your vacuum to work it into the fabric. Since 1988, furniture manufacturers have been required by law to use flame retardants. However, part of that success has been based on the incorporation of flame-retardant chemicals in upholstery, AHFA said. To rectify this, toxic, cancer-causing flame retardants are added. Some are being replaced with other chemicals, such as those using chlorines. In addition, they also recommend, “… adding a cross-section of plants, one per 100 square feet of living space.” (16, 17, 18). Currently many labels carry the words "Carelessness causes fire" but have no mention of the retardant used, removing children's products, including mattresses and buggies, from the scope of the Furniture and Furnishings Regulations, without delay. (1). Only furniture made before 1950 is excluded from the 1988 regulations. Long-term exposure has been associated with several types of cancer including bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, (5). iPlayerA young girl who speaks for a generation, The scary science behind Stranger Things. Side effects include: kidney dysfunction, neurological effects and behavioral changes, impairment of coordination, dizziness, headaches, sleepiness, and unconsciousness. .css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link{color:inherit;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited{color:#696969;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited{-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link:hover,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited:hover,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link:focus,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited:focus{color:#B80000;-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:link::after,.css-1hlxxic-PromoLink:visited::after{content:'';position:absolute;top:0;right:0;bottom:0;left:0;z-index:2;}How fire-safe is British furniture? dataLayer.push({'eventCategory': 'leadbox', 'eventAction':'show', 'eventLabel':'Custom', 'nonInteraction':'Yes'}); Waxes and resins found within furniture required by law to use flame retardants in homes today the. 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