We all know that bleach is “dangerous.” It’s just something you learn when you are little and brush off when you are older. Even though we were told from a young age not to touch or mess with bleach, we toss that to the side when it comes time to clean our own house. But we shouldn’t!
Bleach is extremely dangerous & we should all be using a safe bleach alternative instead.
It may save a life — literally.
The Dangers of Bleach
So you may think I’m being a bit dramatic (yes- that does happen at times…), but I am not. Our mom’s warned us about this product growing up, but what they should’ve done is never brought it into our homes (although, I’m sure they didn’t realize the actual severity of the situation either).
I know you may be thinking, surely they wouldn’t sell this product to us if it was this dangerous.
Would they? …
Actually, the cleaning supply industry does not have an FDA like program to approve or regulate products. So, there is no one out there checking to make sure these products have the safe amount of chemicals. And, usually, they don’t!
When using bleach (or chlorine) at work OSHA requires that employees handle this chemical with gloves and face masks. Scientists will not handle these toxins unless they have gloves, a face mask, and proper ventilation — Do you take these precautions at home?
I know I didn’t.
So, What is Bleach?
Let me simply break down what bleach is for you:
Bleach is made up of two chemicals: chlorine and caustic soda (aka Lye)
So what’s the danger here?
Lye is a strong alkaline solution that is very dangerous when we come in contact with it. The CDC says that you should not use unless your body is fully covered and you have the proper respiratory recommendations.
Chlorine is classified as a hazardous material. It’s not even supposed to be disposed of unless it’s done properly. Chlorine was actually used as the first agent of chemical warfare in WWI <– um, hello?! This thing was used for chemical warfare. WARFARE people! It was used as a killing agent!!
Yet, these are things we have sitting under our cabinets or above our washing machines, easily accessible to our children (yes, even if you have it “locked” away). And, chlorine is actually an active ingredient in MANY cleaners. It’s likely not just in one product you own to clean with, but almost all of them!
- The dangers of chlorine inhalation increases in the shower. The heat actually aerosolizes chlorine and makes it easier to be soaked into the skin or inhaled.
- Chlorine is a strong corrosive material, a highly reactive substance that causes obvious damage to living tissue.
- When it is added to other cleaners, often times when you clean with one product and then pour in bleach afterwards, it creates a poisonous gas. This can lead to bloody noses, neurological disorders, headaches, and even death.
- If it is ingested it may cause pulmonary edema, severe vomiting, and coma.
- Has been linked to childhood asthma and breast cancer.
- CONTINUOUS USE causes tremendous strain and stress on major detoxification organs such as the liver, kidneys, and lungs.
- This is the kicker here, because often times you will not have any signs/symptoms from using bleach. You’ll just sit back and think I’m crazy. However, these effects often build up over time. And even worse, these symptoms are not noticed until these organs begin to shut down.
What Can You Do?
Okay, now that we are done with the scary facts, the question is what can we do to prevent this? You still want your house clean, those stains to be gone, and the peace of mind knowing those germs are killed.
But how can we do this without toxic chemicals?
… Why the all natural way of course (;
You know I’ve got to throw in an all natural solution for this problem, right? It just wouldn’t be me if I didn’t!
I have a Homemade Bleach Alternative that only requires 3 ingredients!
DIY Bleach Alternative
- 1/2 Cup of Hydrogen Peroxide (okay, so this may not be completely “all natural” but all hydrogen peroxide is, is water that has an extra oxygen molecule creating a powerful oxidant & it’s FDA approved)
- 10 drops of Lemon Essential Oil
- 4 Cups of Water
Swirl together in whatever container you’d like to use (spray bottle, jug, etc.). Just remember that oils are best stored in dark places/bottles, so I would recommend a spray bottle like this.
How to Use:
- For tough stains you can spray and let soak
- For whiter whites & to brighten colors add 1/2 C – 2 C during the bleach cycle or in the bleach container in your washer
- Makes a great disinfectant spray, killing up to 99.9% of bacteria!
- Can clean glass and mirrors
- To clean toilets- add some baking soda, swish around, let sit for 5-10 minutes, and then flush clean
- Pour a cup in the bottom of your dishwasher for extra cleaning power. You can also use as a rinse aid
- Add baking soda to form a paste and you can use as a natural soft scrub
So how great is this?! Not only have we learned the dangers of bleach, but we also now know how to make a SAFE, cheap, and simple alternative!
Do you use a different bleach alternative or have any questions? Comment below; I’d love to hear from you!
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