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Many cleaners, air fresheners may pose health risks when used indoors

h. This scenario simulates an apartment in Southern California on a day when the mid-afternoon outdoor ozone concentration is high. A person who stays in the kitchen for two hours after using a moderate amount of one of the terpene-containing products would breathe in about one quarter of the total daily guideline value for particulate matter.

  • Multi-house cleaning by a professional home cleaner. Under this scenario, a person who cleans four houses a day, five days per week, 50 weeks per year, would take in about 80 micrograms per day of formaldehyde, double the guideline value set by California's Proposition 65. In addition, the person's intake of fine particulate matter during the hours spent cleaning would exceed the average federal guideline level for an entire year. These quantities are in addition to the formaldehyde and particulate matter that the person would be exposed to from all other sources and activities during the year.
  • The take-home message from these studies, according to Nazaroff, is that everyone ?but especially cleaning professionals ?should be cautious about overuse of products with high levels of ethylene-based glycol ethers and terpenes. Rooms should be ventilated during and after cleaning, some products should be used in diluted solutions as opposed to full-strength, and cleaning supplies should be promptly removed from occupied spaces once cleaning is done. Also, people should avoid the use of ozone generators or ionizing air cleaners, especially in the same space where terpene-containing cleaning products or air fresheners are being used.

    The report is an important milestone that highlights the need to investigate potential health effects of ultrafine particles produced in such reactions, said Bart Croes, chief of the ARB's Research Division.

    "Dr. Nazaroff and his team have done a very thorough scientific assessment of the emissions from cleaning products and how they contribute to exposures
    '"/>

    Source:University of California - Berkeley


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