Claire Barnett of the Healthy Schools Network recently passed along an important communication from Reuters Health reporting airborne pollutants from some cleaning products can aggravate asthma.
According to the Reuters Health release, a research team from the University of Montreal Hospital Research Center in Canada studied professional cleaners and found during the study of cleaning companies in Spain in which 14 different cleaning products or agents were used, that:
“Products such as bleach, glass cleaner, detergents and air fresheners exacerbated asthma-related symptoms for the women [professional cleaners], and their reduced lung function lasted until the morning after exposure, in some cases getting worse with time.”
“‘These results support the importance of developing workplace health and safety practices designed to limit exposures to irritant chemicals in cleaning products,’ the study team wrote online April 23 in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.”
Researchers noted several studies “have reported associations between exposure to cleaning products and asthma.”
Reuters also quoted Dr. Norman Edelman, consultant on scientific affairs for the American Lung Association (ALA) regarding the plight of workers:
"Many of the people working in this industry are day laborers, they are not unionized and may be afraid to lose their jobs if they complain or ask for protective gear."