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Could It Be Your Fabric Softener?

written by Marina Zacharias

Sometimes it's hard to believe that health problems can arise from the simplest products used in everyday living. There is a movement going on right now to participate in a class action lawsuit against manufacturers of fabric softeners. Why?

Turns out that the chemicals used can cause serious trouble with your central nervous system! Exposure can be through inhalation from the exhaust of dryers or skin contract from the treated fabrics. Symptoms include (but are not limited to): disorientation, dizziness, headaches, memory loss, neck and spine pain, etc.

A brief glance at the ingredients used along with some basic research from their "Material Safety Data Sheets" is enough to make me stop using any of it.

Alpha-Terpineol - "highly irritating to mucous membrances" ... "aspiration into lungs can produce pneumonitis or even fatal edema" ... "can also cause loss of muscular coordination" --- "Prevent repeated or prolonged skin contact."

Benzyl Acetate -- "Cardinogenic (linked to pancreatic cancer). "from vapors: irritating to eyes and respirator passages, exciting cough" ... "can be absorbed through the skin causing systemic effects" ... "do not flush to sewer."

Benzyl Alcohol -- "irritating to the upper respiratory tract" ... "headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drop in blood pressure, depression, and death in severe cases due to respiratory failure."

Camphor -- On EPA's Hazardous Waste List. "readily absorbed through the body tissues" ... "irritation of eyes, skin, nose and throat" ... "dizziness, confusion, nausea, twitching muscles and convulsions" ... "avoid inhalation of vapors."

Chloroform - (You've got to be kidding!!)

Ethyl Acetate -- Narcotic. "may cause headache and narcosis" ... "may cause anemia with leukocytosis and damage to liver and kidneys" ... "wash thoroughly after handling."

Limonene -- Carcinogenic. "prevent its' contact with skin or eyes because it is an irritant and sensitizer" ... "always wash thoroughly after using this material and before eating or drinking" ... "do not inhale limonene vapor."

Linalool -- Narcotic. "respiratory disturbances" .... "in animal tests: ataxic gait, reduced spontaneous motor activity and depression... depressed heart activity... development of respiratory disturbances leading to death."

Pentane -- "danger - Harmful if inhaled.... Avoid breathing vapor" ... "inhalation of vapors may cause headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, irritation of respiratory tract and loss of consciousness. Prolonged exposure can cause dermatitis."

Ain't life grand when the "big buck" boys can foist this stuff on an unsuspecting public without a guilty conscience!! Thanks for protecting us "big brother."