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POLLUTANTS IN YOUR HOUSE

The following is an excerpt from: Guideto Natural Baby Care: Nontoxic and Environmentally Friendly Ways to Take Care of Your New Child, by Mindy Pennybackerand Aisha Ikramuddin, copyright 1999 by Mothers & Others for a LivablePlanet. This material is used by permission of John Wiley & Sons,Inc.

Modern homes are composed of thousands of chemically based building products, from PVC plastic pipes and particleboard subflooring to urea-formaldehyde adhesives and fiberglass insulation. We decorate them with fume-emitting paints, synthetic carpets, vinyl flooring and wallpaper, and toxically finished furniture. Then we spritz, spray, and wipe every surface with chemicals to clean, degrease, deodorize, disinfect, dust, polish, waterproof, and debug. For every household problem, there's almost always a chemical product to solve it. "Industry has done an incredibly good job of narrowing a product's purpose, so that an average home may have 150 different products in cupboards and utility closets," says Wayne Tusa, president of Environmental Risk and Loss Control, a company that conducts residential environmental testing. No wonder indoor air pollution is one of the top environmental risks to the public!

As your baby begins to roam your home, you'll need to be even more vigilant about pollutants throughout the house, even if the source is only in one room. Particles of lead and asbestos, and chemicals from the smoke of a fireplace or from pesticides might drift from room to room on air currents or be tracked in on shoes. This chapter focuses on hazardous indoor pollutants that can be found throughout your home and how you can reduce your baby's exposure to them. You'll find sections on:

Excerpted from: Guideto Natural Baby Care, by Mindy Pennybackerand Aisha Ikramuddin, copyright 1999 by Mothers & Others for a LivablePlanet. This material is used by permission of John Wiley & Sons,Inc.


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