Ditch the Dryer Sheets
Are you trying to remove harmful toxins from your home? Did you know that dryer sheets (even the perfume free ones) are loaded with toxins? Dryer Sheets, like other fragrant products, contain petrochemicals. These chemicals can adversely affect the central nervous system and may produce symptoms such as: aphasia, blurred vision, disorientation, dizziness, headaches, hunger, memory loss, numbness in face, pain in neck and spine.
There are many Central Nervous System disorders that can be worsened by these toxins including: Alzheimer’s Disease, Attention Deficit Disorder, Dementia, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s Disease, Seizures, Strokes, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), learning and focus disabilities, agitation and anger.
Neurologists agree, the only thing we know for sure is environmental toxins contribute to CNS disorders. According to The Brain Wash by Michelle Cook: There are two very disturbing trends: the incidence of brain disease is growing at an alarming rate; and increasing levels of industrial chemicals are being found in human bodies.
Since the laws for manufacturing products in this country are so laxed, you won’t see the toxic ingredients listed on the box of dryer sheets. I looked at a box at the grocery store and it simply says “Keep out of Reach of Children”. Yet, we put them in the dryer with our children’s clothes and they absorb these toxins through their skin and breath in the fumes left on their clothes. Often the label will say biodegradable cationic softeners. These ingredients that may make our clothes fluffy and static-free are toxic chemicals which build up in our body and can mess up the central nervous system. Here are the chemicals found in most brands of dryer sheets:
1. Alpha-Terpineol can cause central nervous system disorders. Can also cause loss of muscular coordination, central nervous system depression, and headaches.
2. Benzyl Alcohol causes central nervous system disorders, headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, central nervous system depression, and, in severe cases, death.
3. Camphor on the US EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. Central nervous system stimulant, causes dizziness, confusion, nausea, twitching muscles, and convulsions.
4. Chloroform on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. Neurotoxic and carcinogenic.
5. Ethyl Acetate on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. Narcotic. May cause headaches and narcosis (stupor).
6. Linalool causes central nervous system disorders. Narcotic. In studies of animals, it caused ataxic gait (loss of muscular coordination), reduced spontaneous motor activity, and depression.
7. Pentane Labels with this say, Danger Harmful if inhaled; extremely flammable. Keep away from heat and avoid breathing vapor. Inhalation of vapors may cause headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, irritation of respiratory tract and loss of consciousness. Repeated inhalation of vapors may cause central nervous system depression. Contact can cause eye irritation. Prolonged exposure may cause dermatitis (skin rash). Note: Think about these warnings next time you are standing next to your dryer vent getting a blast of this into your lungs.
So what can you do to keep your clothes soft and static free without those toxic dryer sheets? I found that dryer balls made of wool with a few drops of Essential Oil work as a perfect solution. I discovered Dryer Balls at a Norwex party I attended. Dryer Balls not only remove the need for toxic dryer sheets, so they save you money but also reduce drying time by up to 25% by increasing space with their bouncing around with your clothes. Others have reported their clothes are less wrinkled when they use these. I’ve made the switch to wool dryer balls with just 2-3 drops of Young Living Lavender Essential Oil for our laundry (or scent of your choice).
Another simple solution is to place a few drops of essential oil on a dampened wash cloth. Note: I only recommend using Young Living essential oils for making your own dryer sheets or with dryer balls because I know that they are not adulterated and they are not diluted down with fatty/greasy oils which could stain your clothing or even be flammable like the cheap imitations!
Saves time, money, your clothing, your health and the environment, so please just ditch the dryer sheets!
Resources: http://www.ewg.org (Environmental working group)
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