The more environmental blogs you read, the more dangerous everything in our society seems to be. Driving down the highway releases carbon dioxide that’s slowly warming the planet. Buying a regular ear of corn supports genetically modified farming, which has links to health and ecological risks. Giving your toddler a rubber ducky can expose her to PVC. It’s the same world you, your parents, and grandparents grew up in, but it suddenly appears to be more menacing than ever before. With so many risks and environmental concerns, some people wonder if fighting them is worth it, and others point to healthy parents and grandparents who never worried about plastics or pollution. The flurry of risks is certainly overwhelming at times, but the hullabaloo often has a justification, especially about non toxic cleaning products.
Perhaps more than anything else, people dismiss the concerns related to toxins as superstitious and fanciful. A lot of people do point to their grandparents, as if to say their health disproves any danger of standard cleaning products. It’s true that most people in their eighties and nineties used ammonia, bleach, and other chemical cleaners throughout their lives. Just about every adult, actually, grew up around them, and no one’s grown an extra arm as a result. The trend to use non toxic cleaning products is a new one, and based on the health of most adults, some think it’s a trend that won’t last. That argument, though, is about as dangerous as the toxic chemicals themselves. While a lot of healthy elderly people were once exposed to standard cleaning products, there are a lot too who have since developed cancer and damaged organs—illnesses closely tied to exposure to chemicals and toxins. The medical evidence is strong, but evidence alone isn’t enough to promote the widespread use of non toxic cleaning products.
Ever since the Industrial Revolution, our world has produced and even depended on toxic products. Coal plants blocked out the sky in the largest 19th century cities, and by the 1960s almost everything was made of plastic, delivered in plastic, and coated with a plastic resin. Chemists and doctors know now that most of those plastics are more or less poisonous, but that hasn’t stopped humans from using them. We’re an efficient and economical race. Business drives most of the world, so if switching to non toxic cleaning products isn’t the wisest commercial move, it won’t occur.
That generalization sounds dire, but families have a choice, you have a choice, about what products get used at home. The simple availability of non toxic cleaning products should be an encouragement to concerned parents, because these alternatives haven’t always existed. You will probably never coerce a corporation to switch to safer products, but you can in your home, which is the most important place. Your parents and their parents might be perfectly healthy despite exposure to endless toxins, but that exposure is still a risk. By protecting your home and your family with non toxic cleaning products, you eradicate that risk, which really does make a difference.