As a parent, we all know that we are encouraged to store toxic household cleaner in locked cabinets, out of the sight and out reach of children.¬†This is of course good advice and while this advice may have helped considerably, with injury from cleaning products in children declining 46 percent since 1990, a new study¬†by The Center for Injury Research and Policy published by the American¬†Academy¬†of Pediatrics¬†demonstrates that children under age 6 are still at¬†high risk of poisoning and other injuries from cleaning products in¬†the home.¬†Spray bottles are the most common source of injury, especially those¬†containing bleach-based products.¬†¬†Despite our best efforts to keep these¬†and other products locked away, US poison control centers still receive¬†hundreds of thousands of calls each year because of unintentional¬†poisonings from cleaning products. Each call is more than¬†just a number; it¬†can be¬†a very scary moment in the life of a family.¬† Nearly 12,000 children
were sick enough to be treated in US hospital emergency departments in 2006 alone.
Is the old childproofing strategy out of date?¬†¬†¬†The answer to this question is yes. We haven’t seen much improvement in overall injury rates since 1996, and injuries¬†from cleaners in spray bottles have actually increased.¬†¬†¬†With more effective non-toxic cleaning products¬†now available that also get the job done, when it comes to childproofing, expectant mothers and parents of young children should also replace their toxic household cleaning products with non-toxic ones.¬†¬†This not only reduces the risk of immediate injury and the exposure of ongoing toxins for children in the home but also for mothers who are using these toxic products.
Who is at risk?
The Center for Injury Research and Policy reviewed 17 years of emergency room data for children under age 6 to analyze the injuries from household cleaners:
¬∑¬†More than 80 percent of poisonings occur while at home
¬∑¬†Children age 1 to 3 account for 72 percent of injuries
¬∑¬†Boys (59 percent) are more likely affected than girls (41 percent)
¬∑¬†One-year-olds account for 46 percent of injuries
How are they injured?
¬∑¬†Poisoning is the most common (68 percent), followed by
chemical burns (16 percent), and other injuries to the skin or eyes
¬∑¬†Spray bottles are the most common source (40 percent), followed
by regular containers (30 percent), kitchenware (14 percent), and
recently cleaned items (8 percent)
¬∑¬†Bleach is the most common product ingredient (37 percent),
followed by¬†acids/alkalis, detergents, and
What’s the Solution?
An easy one: Effective, non-toxic cleaners are available for every common household cleaning job so it just makes sense to replace your¬†toxic cleaners¬†with those that are non-toxic.¬†¬†Something to think about: You make¬†sure your child is buckled up in the safest car seat on the market right?¬†¬†So¬†why not make the same choice¬†to have¬†a safer, toxin-free¬†home.
We shop from a company that manufactures all household/personal care products that are safe and healthy. ¬†I’d be happy to share the information with you.
Submitted by Gina Neef,