Do you know what chemicals were used in the manufacturing of your child’s bed and furniture? If you answered “no” to this question, you aren’t alone. The truth is that most parents pay little-to-no attention to the chemicals used in their child’s furniture or how they are made. But alarming new studies are revealing the dangers of common chemicals found in furniture, some of which may increase your child’s risk of developing ADHD and other health conditions.
One of the most common types of chemicals found in furniture is flame retardants. I know what you’re probably thinking: isn’t this a beneficial chemical? Yes and no. Flame retardant chemicals were originally introduced into couches, recliners, beds and other fabric-bases furniture nearly half a century ago to reduce the number of house fires. This was a time when a significantly larger portion of the population smoked cigarettes, so it wasn’t uncommon for people to fall asleep with a burning cigarette; thus, catching their house on fire.
According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Americans contain “much higher” levels of chemicals in our bodies than people in other parts of the world due to our constant exposure to flame retardants. When California passed its TB 117 standard, all new furniture manufactured within the state was required to include a several pounds of flame retardants. And while California is the only state which uses this standard, furniture companies sell the same flame-retardant covered products to other states as well.
Exposure to these flame retardant chemicals has been linked to ADHD, infertility, cancer, lower IQs, birth defects, asthma, austism and more. And contrary to what some people may believe, these chemicals don’t necessarily prevent fires. When exposed to enough heat, they will still catch fire — only now the fire will turn into a cocktail of toxic smoke. Numerous fire departments throughout the country have reported an increase in worker cancer rates, which is believed to have been at least partially caused by exposure to burning products made with flame retardants.
Tips To Protect Your Family:
- Choose furniture made with Eco-friendly flame retardants.
- Vacuum your home on a daily basis.
- Chance your air filter once every 30 days.
- Avoid furniture with the TB 117 label.
- Use a vacuum attachment wand to clean your furniture.
- Contact the furniture manufacturer directly, either by phone or email, to inquire about the chemicals and manufacturing process used in their products.