health brief

Avoid Dryer Vent Fumes for Better Mental Health

Side effects Could Include Headaches, Asthmatic Reactions, Nausea andIirritability

by Nancy Warnars

Avoid Dryer Vent Fumes for Better Mental Health -

Those fragrant whiffs coming from your (or your neighbor's) dryer vent may not be good for your mental health. These fumes may contain toxins with side effects such as headaches, asthmatic reactions, nausea and irritability.

According to Dr. Anne Steinemann, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Public Affairs at the University of Washington, “If smells are coming out of a smokestack or tail pipe, they are regulated; but if they are coming out of a dryer vent they are not. An analysis of compounds in laundry products found that 25 volatile air pollutants- including carcinogens, acetaldehyde and benzene, to name a few, are coming out of laundry vents."

In addition, some of the same toxic chemicals are often found in many skin lotions, shampoos, deodorants, hand soaps, cleaning products and sprays, labeled as "fragrances."

Aside from making sure that dryers are properly vented, purchasing cleaning and personal-care products that are benzene, petroleum and benzyl acetate-free is your best defense. Read labels and demand scent-free products that support hormonal balance.

Our responsibility starts with being a good steward to our own bodies and supporting a cleaner, more sustainable eco-friendly environment.

Nancy Warnars is a mental health licensed professional counselor with ACT Absolute Choices Today Counseling PLLC in East Lansing, MI. For more information contact her at 248-845-0513 or visit her website: AbsoluteChoicesTherapy.com.


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