Posts Tagged ‘indoor air pollution’

Is Your Nursery Toxic? Check out this Experiment by Good Morning America and Greenguard Environmental Institute.

Monday, April 30th, 2012


non toxic nurseryA recent experiment conducted by Good Morning America and Greenguard Environmental Institute, a nursery was set up with indoor-pollution monitoring equipment, then furnished and decorated. Within a week, the equipment found 300 different chemicals in the room – some of which are known to cause allergies, hormonal disruption, and even cancer.

Some of the products were particularly volatile. According to the results: “the rocker contained seven times California’s recommended level of formaldehyde, a chemical known to cause cancer, and the crib mattress gave off more than 100 different chemicals, including industrial solvents and alcohols. The paint used on the nursery’s walls contained chemical gases at five times the recommended limit.”

Can this be normal? Is that what every nursery is like? Did they go out of their way to find products that were suspect? No, they just furnished the room the way any parent would.

It’s hard enough for adult bodies to process that kind of pollution, but it’s particularly hard for babies!

How do you outfit a nursery so that it is safe for your baby? It’s not as difficult as you might think. Here are a few tips:

• Get wooden furniture, rather than plastic, and go for brands that use non-toxic materials in the manufacturing of their products. Check online – they’re not hard to find.

• Instead of carpeting or laminate floors, used natural products like wood or cork, and, as with the furniture, ensure they aren’t manufactured or applied to the floor with toxic chemicals. Several different companies offer flooring that doesn’t emit VOCs. Check Debra’s List for a list. Search ‘flooring.’

• Use low- or no-VOCs paints. Several name brands now offer these kinds of paints. They may be a little more expensive than others, but not much, and they are well worth it.

• Get a Naturepedic organic crib mattress. Our mattresses are GREENGUARD certified to the highest standard, and they are certified organic by Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – the only certification that guarantees a truly organic product. See more about this in our blog “Is Your Crib Mattress Really Organic?

• Textiles – bedding, throw rugs, curtains – should be made with organic cotton, linen or silk. If you are going to use non-organic cotton or other natural materials, make sure you don’t get something that’s wrinkle-resistant, wash and wear, or no-iron. Wrinkle-free products are made that way with formaldehyde.

• Cleaning products and laundry detergents should also be natural and free of fragrance, phthalates or other chemicals. They’re available in health food stores but, for cleaning, vinegar, water and baking soda works on just about anything.

• To give the room a boost and help clean the air, try plants. See our blog “Cleaning Baby’s Nursery Air with House Plants”, for a list of the specific plants that are most beneficial.

Give your baby a good start in life by eliminating any chemicals they have to cope with as they try to develop into healthy children and adults.

Ten Simple Ways to Create a Non-Toxic Home for Your Baby (and yourself)

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011


creating a non-toxic homeWomen who are not committed to non-toxic living, even though they know at least a little about the dangers of some of the chemicals in their lives, often find themselves more serious about the subject when they become pregnant. Having a few toxins in your own system is one thing; foisting them off on your innocent and somewhat defenseless little one is another story. So, now that you’re taking a more serious look at all of this, what do you do?

Before we get into the ten simple ways you can create a non-toxic home, I would like to impress upon you that the first step is to create a non-toxic nursery. That’s where your baby will be spending most of their time for the next year or two. Start with a non-toxic crib mattress, one that doesn’t emit harmful chemical fumes into the air your baby will breathe for 12 to 18 hours a day, and go from there. Use our blog, Creating a Non-Toxic Nursery, as a helpful, item by item guide.

Now, let’s move onto the rest of the house.

In truth, creating a toxic-free home can be a daunting and expensive task if you include buying new furniture and other big-ticket items. But there are many things you can do to greatly reduce the chemical burden of your home without having to take things that far. Not perfection, but so very close.

How do you find out about these relatively simple changes? Rather than telling you all about it here, I will refer you to one of the best sources of information available – Debra Lynn Dadd’s free e-book, Ten Toxics You Can Toss Today. A wonderful little book, easy and fast to read and understand.

Some of the things on the ‘ten toxics’ list are pretty simple – Brush Your Teeth Without Fluoride, Wash Windows Without Ammonia – those aren’t too difficult to figure out. But other items are things you might not have a clue how to address, or even know there is a need to address them. Like Stay Cozy Without Carbon Monoxide. Huh?

For all ten items, Debra provides useful information about what the problems are with those toxics and how to find healthy alternatives. If you have any questions about specific items in your home, Debra is a goldmine of information. You can check her toxics and health website, read her book Home Safe Home, or even get an in-person or phone consultation.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the air in our homes is two to five times more toxic than the air outside. Other experts say it’s much worse. Even though your baby is going to spend a lot of time in their room for the first little while, the toxic fumes from other parts of the home inevitably also end up in the nursery. There’s no way to stop it.

Make the commitment to a non-toxic home now. Don’t risk your child’s health and happiness by exposing them to the dangers of toxic chemicals.