Cleaning sprays ‘as harmful to your lungs as smoking 20 cigarettes a day’
Using everyday cleaning sprays can be as harmful to a woman’s lungs as smoking 20 a day, research has shown.
And a separate study found household products may account for half of air pollution in cities.
The first study, in Norway, found lung capacity fell 4.3mls a year faster in women who cleaned at home and 7.1mls a year faster if they worked as cleaners. Asthma was also more prevalent.
Men who cleaned did not show a similar decline.
Prof Dr Cecile Svanes, of the University of Bergen, said: “Cleaning chemicals very likely cause rather substantial damage to your lungs.” She said sprays were usually unnecessary as a wet microfibre cloth was enough.
The second study, published at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Austin, Texas, found 50% of “volatile organic compounds” in the air in Los Angeles came from products such as paint, pesticides, bleach and perfumes.
Prof Jonathan Grigg, of the British Lung Foundation, said it confirmed that “air pollution can come from a range of sources”.
Dr Samantha Walker, of Asthma UK, said the Norwegian study was “deeply concerning”.
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