Women who regularly use cleaning supplies are prone to lung damage

Women who regularly use cleaning supplies are prone to lung damage

Women who regularly use cleaning supplies are prone to lung damage

The researchers did study a group of men who worked in the cleaning business and compared their results to non-cleaning men and found out that there are no significant differences in the decline of FEV1 or FVC between the two groups.

Researchers found that the decline in lung function of women working as cleaners or regularly using cleaning products at home was to the same degree as smoking 20 cigarettes a day over 10 to 20 years.

"While the short-term effects of cleaning chemicals on asthma are becoming increasingly well documented, we lack knowledge of the long-term impact", said Cecile Svanes, Professor at the University of Bergen in Norway.

The cleaning products appeared to affect the lung capacity of women more than men, though the study noted that there were fewer men enrolled in the study.

The team suggested that the decline in lung function could be caused by chemicals in cleaning products irritating the mucous membranes which line the lungs, which over time can lead to changes in the airways.

Well, dishcloth-dodgers have the ideal excuse as scientists have claimed that cleaning your home can be just as damaging to your lungs as smoking.

The population of 6,230 participants was examined three times over 20 years, as part of the European Community Respiratory Health Survey. Meanwhile, "cleaning was not significantly associated with lung function decline in men".

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A similar decline was seen in women who cleaned professionally.

"This study further confirms that air pollution can come from a range of sources, including from paints, adhesives and cleaning products we use indoors". Previous research has found that male lungs are more resistant to damage from various irritants including tobacco smoke and wood dust.

"Public health officials should strictly regulate cleaning products and encourage producers to develop cleaning agents that can not be inhaled".

Dr Samantha Walker, Director of Policy and Research at Asthma UK says: "Cleaning products can be toxic for people with asthma as they often contain chemical compounds that can inflame the airways, leaving people prone to an asthma attack".

Prof Oistein Svanes added that cleaning chemicals are "usually unnecessary" to use, saying that a good old microfibre cloth and water are 'more than enough for most purposes'.

However, there hasn't been a study to show the effects of the chemicals on healthy subjects, on the long-run.

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