Cover image for Creating a healthy household : the ultimate guide for healthier, safer, less-toxic living
Title:
Creating a healthy household : the ultimate guide for healthier, safer, less-toxic living
Author:
Bower, Lynn Marie.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Bloomington, IN : Healthy House Institute, [2000]

©2000
Physical Description:
701 pages ; 23 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780963715678
Format :
Book

Available:*

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Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library TS175 .B67 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Summary

Summary

Bower, who acquired multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) two decades ago, explains health concerns associated with common household products and equipment, and describes products and sources for healthier cleaning, personal care, bedding, furniture, improving indoor air and water, and reducing risk from electromagnetic fields. She also discusses safer alternatives for decorating, clothing, appliances, and hobbies. Of interest to those with allergies and chemical sensitivities. The author edits a newsletter for those with MCS, and has written two previous books on healthy households. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Many consumers are researching alternative products and greener lifestyles owing to the increasing prevalence of asthma, allergies, and chemical sensitivity. The author, who suffers from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, offers suggestions and resources for more natural personal and household products based on her review of manufacturers' material safety data sheets, product literature, and discussions with technical-service personnel, consumer affairs specialists, dealers, and consumers. The first part of this well-organized book briefly discusses some of the medical conditions associated with unhealthy indoor environments and generally addresses purchasing alternative items. Six subsequent, detailed sections cover a wide range of home and personal issues, including cleaning, laundry, cosmetics, textiles, remodeling, automobiles, home safety, pests, hobbies, appliances, and water and air quality. Throughout, suppliers are listed in boldfaced type, while a comprehensive resource list gives full contact information for each reputable company or organization mentioned. An extensive book that will empower users, this is highly recommended for public libraries.DBonnie Poquette, Shorewood P.L., WI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Table of Contents

Part 1 The Basicsp. 35
Introductionp. 37
How to Use this Bookp. 41
Chapter 1 Your Household and Your Healthp. 43
Modern Lifestyle Consequencesp. 43
Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)p. 45
Allergies and Asthmap. 49
Helpful Organizations and Websitesp. 52
Other Assistancep. 55
Agency Assistance in Generalp. 55
Federal Income Taxesp. 55
Social Security Income (SSI) Benefitsp. 55
Housingp. 56
Lifestyle Adjustmentp. 57
Lessonsp. 58
Chapter 2 Getting Startedp. 59
What is Safe or Healthy?p. 59
Healthy Definitionsp. 59
Problems of Personal Tolerancep. 62
Testingp. 62
Buying in Quantityp. 63
Storage Concernsp. 64
Finding Healthier Productsp. 64
Helpful Books, Resource Guides, and Catalogsp. 64
Helpful Consultantsp. 65
Costp. 66
Making Choicesp. 66
Part 2 Cleaningp. 67
Chapter 3 Basic Ingredientsp. 69
Natural vs. Synthetic Productsp. 69
Scented vs. Unscented Productsp. 70
What Are Scents?p. 70
Natural Essential Oils and Perfumesp. 71
Synthetic Scents and Perfumesp. 71
Problems with Scentsp. 72
Scent-Free and Hypoallergenic Productsp. 74
Products Developed for the Chemically Sensitivep. 74
Soaps Vs. Detergentsp. 75
Soapsp. 75
Detergentsp. 76
Should You Use Soap or Detergent?p. 77
Government Regulationsp. 77
Reducing Conventional Household Allergensp. 78
Chapter 4 Personal Carep. 81
What are Cosmetics and Toiletries?p. 82
Early Natural and Synthetic Ingredientsp. 82
Typical Modern Ingredientsp. 82
Alternative Cosmetics and Toiletriesp. 83
Items Created for the Chemically-Sensitivep. 83
Scent-Free and Hypoallergenic Productsp. 84
All-Natural Productsp. 84
Homemade Preparationsp. 84
Personal-Care Product Suggestionsp. 85
Astringentsp. 85
Baby Carep. 85
Bath Soaksp. 86
Blackhead Therapyp. 87
Combs, Brushes, and Scrubbersp. 87
Dental Carep. 88
Deodorantsp. 89
Diapersp. 90
Dusting Powderp. 91
Eye Carep. 92
Facial Masksp. 92
Facial Scrubsp. 92
Feminine Hygienep. 93
First Aidp. 94
Foot Carep. 94
Hair Colorantsp. 95
Hair Conditionersp. 96
Hair Spraysp. 96
Hair-Setting Solutionsp. 97
Make-Upp. 97
Moisturizersp. 98
Nail Carep. 100
Nursing Padsp. 100
Permanentsp. 100
Shampoos and Rinsesp. 100
Shaving Needsp. 102
Shower Capsp. 103
Soapsp. 103
Sunscreensp. 106
Swabsp. 107
Chapter 5 Launderingp. 109
Laundry Basicsp. 109
Fabric Care Guidep. 110
Laundry Productsp. 111
Typical Laundry Productsp. 112
Alternative Laundry Productsp. 113
Alternative Bleachesp. 118
Stain-Removal Productsp. 119
Fabric Softenersp. 120
Laundering Diapersp. 121
Laundering for Allergic Peoplep. 122
Removing Odors from New Clothingp. 123
Machine Washing Delicatesp. 125
Hand-Launderingp. 125
Drying Your Laundryp. 126
Air-Dryingp. 126
Machine-Dryingp. 128
Ironingp. 128
Electric Ironsp. 128
Ironing-Board Pads and Coversp. 129
Spray Starchesp. 129
Making Ironing Tolerablep. 130
Steamingp. 130
Dry Cleaningp. 130
Specialized Wet Cleaningp. 131
Lint Removalp. 131
Chapter 6 House Cleaningp. 133
Cleaning Productsp. 133
Alternative Cleaning Productsp. 134
Homemade Alternative Cleaning Productsp. 134
Some Suggested Alternative Cleaning Productsp. 135
Alternative Product Line Suggestionsp. 135
Waterproof Household Glove Suggestionsp. 137
Multi-Purpose Cleaner Suggestionsp. 137
Household Cleaningp. 140
Household Cleaning for Allergic and Asthmatic Peoplep. 140
Dustingp. 140
Polishingp. 142
Sweepingp. 143
Vacuumingp. 144
Cleaning Hard-Surfaced Flooringp. 150
Cleaning Rugs and Carpetsp. 154
Cleaning Windowsp. 160
Cleaning Wallsp. 161
Kitchen Cleaningp. 162
Sponges and Brushesp. 162
Scouringp. 163
Rust and Calcium Removalp. 164
Cleaning Greasy Problemsp. 165
Disinfecting Countertops and Sinksp. 166
Washing Dishesp. 166
Cleaning Drainsp. 168
Cleaning Ovens and Stovetopsp. 169
Bathroom Cleaningp. 170
Mold and Mildewp. 170
Cleaning Sinks, Tubs, and Tilep. 172
Cleaning Toiletsp. 172
Cleaning Mirrorsp. 174
Part 3 Textilesp. 175
Chapter 7 Healthier Fibers and Stuffingsp. 177
Natural Fibersp. 177
Natural Plant Fibersp. 177
Natural Animal Fibersp. 183
Leather and Furp. 187
Leatherp. 187
Furp. 188
Natural Stuffingsp. 189
Acceptable Synthetic Fibersp. 193
Nylonp. 193
Rayonp. 194
Tencelp. 194
Specific Textile Concernsp. 195
How Natural are Some Natural-Fiber Textiles?p. 195
How Much Shrinkage Should be Expected?p. 195
Is Dry Cleaning a Problem?p. 196
Why is 100%-Cotton Denim Often Intolerable?p. 196
Are Acceptable Textiles Hard to Find?p. 197
Are Low-Impact Dyes Important?p. 198
Chapter 8 Clothingp. 199
Women's Clothingp. 199
Accessoriesp. 200
Aprons and Smocksp. 200
Brassieresp. 200
Coatsp. 201
Dresses, Blouses, Skirts, Pants, Etc.p. 202
Hats, Gloves, and Scarvesp. 204
Larger-Sized Clothingp. 205
Leotards, Exercise Clothes, and Bathing Suitsp. 205
Maternity and Nursing-Mother Clothingp. 206
Pantiesp. 206
Shoes and Bootsp. 206
Sleepwearp. 207
Slips and Camisolesp. 208
Socks and Hosieryp. 208
Sweatersp. 209
Sweatwearp. 210
Thermal Underwearp. 210
Men's Clothingp. 211
Bathing Trunks and Exercise Clothesp. 211
Belts, Braces, and Walletsp. 211
Coatsp. 211
Handkerchiefsp. 212
Hats, Gloves, and Winter Scarvesp. 212
Shoes and Bootsp. 213
Slacks, Shirts, Etc.p. 214
Sleepwearp. 215
Socksp. 215
Sport Jackets and Suitsp. 216
Sweatersp. 217
Sweatwearp. 217
Tiesp. 217
Thermal Underwearp. 218
Underwearp. 218
Work Clothesp. 218
Children's Clothingp. 218
Coatsp. 218
Hats, Mittens, Scarvesp. 219
Play, School, and Dress Clothingp. 219
Sleepwearp. 220
Socks and Tightsp. 220
Shoes and Bootsp. 220
Thermal Underwearp. 220
Underwearp. 220
Winter Gloves, Hats, and Scarvesp. 220
Baby Clothingp. 220
Bibsp. 220
Daywearp. 221
Diapersp. 221
Diaper Wraps, Swim Diapers, and Underwearp. 221
Footwearp. 221
Sleepwearp. 221
Hatsp. 222
Custom-Made Clothesp. 222
Chapter 9 Linensp. 223
Beddingp. 223
Bedding Concernsp. 223
Specific Bedding Suggestionsp. 226
Custom-Made Beddingp. 254
Towelingp. 254
Bath Towelsp. 255
Baby Towelsp. 255
Guest and Hand Towelsp. 256
Kitchen Towelsp. 256
Pot Holders and Oven Mittsp. 256
Tablecloths, Placemats, and Napkinsp. 256
Part 4 Your Housep. 259
Chapter 10 The Home Workshopp. 261
Locations for Your Home Workshopp. 261
Safe Home-Workshop Basicsp. 262
Proper Product Storage and Disposalp. 262
Proper Working Conditionsp. 263
Personal Protective Gearp. 264
Home-Workshop Materials and Productsp. 265
Typical Home-Workshop Materials and Productsp. 265
Materials and Productsp. 266
Testing Home-Workshop Products and Materialsp. 266
Suggestions for Alternative Materials and Productsp. 270
Chapter 11 Home Remodelingp. 295
Walls and Ceilingsp. 295
Wall Paintp. 295
Wallpaperp. 298
Stencilingp. 300
Marbleizing and Visual Texturizingp. 301
Wood Panelingp. 301
Floorsp. 302
Carpetingp. 302
Composite Floorsp. 306
Solid-Wood Floorsp. 308
Linoleump. 310
Cork Flooringp. 311
Vinyl Flooringp. 313
Ceramic Tilep. 314
Cabinetryp. 316
Typical Modern Cabinetsp. 317
New Alternative Cabinetsp. 318
Updating of Old Cabinetsp. 321
Countertopsp. 323
Chapter 12 Home Decoratingp. 329
Decorating for Allergic Peoplep. 329
Furniturep. 330
Typical Modern Manufactured Furniturep. 330
Acceptable New Manufactured Furniturep. 331
Unfinished and Kit Furniturep. 335
Customized Catalog Furniturep. 337
Custom-Made Furniturep. 337
Antique Furniturep. 339
Making Used Furniture Tolerablep. 340
Floor Rugsp. 342
Cotton Rugsp. 342
Wool Rugsp. 343
Other Natural-Fiber Rugsp. 344
Rug Gripsp. 345
Window Treatmentsp. 345
Metal Blindsp. 345
Wood, Reed, and Bamboo Blindsp. 347
Roman Shadesp. 347
Roller Shadesp. 348
Curtains and Draperiesp. 348
Swagsp. 349
Shuttersp. 350
Decorative Glassp. 351
Shower Curtains and Doorsp. 352
Tub and Shower Curtainsp. 352
Tub and Shower Doorsp. 353
Lightingp. 353
Some Artificial Light Basicsp. 354
Bulbs and Tubes (Lamps)p. 354
Fixtures and Decorative Lampsp. 360
Flamesp. 362
Home Decorating Accessoriesp. 362
Collectibles and Accent Piecesp. 363
Throws and Toss Pillowsp. 364
House Plantsp. 364
Accessories for Special Roomsp. 365
Chapter 13 The Safe Havenp. 367
Why Create a Safe Haven?p. 367
Making the Safe Havenp. 368
Choosing the Best Locationp. 368
Removal of Potential Problemsp. 368
Thorough Cleaningp. 369
Appropriate Modificationsp. 369
Maintenancep. 370
Moving into the Safe Havenp. 370
The First Nightp. 370
Assessing Your Safe Havenp. 370
Possible Additional Modificationsp. 371
Further Air Quality Improvementsp. 371
Further Room Modificationsp. 371
Creating Another Safe Havenp. 372
The Successful Safe Havenp. 372
Chapter 14 Garages and Automobilesp. 373
Garage Organization and Safetyp. 374
Controlling Odors within Garagesp. 374
The Carp. 376
Car Carep. 376
Car-Interior Odor Concernsp. 378
Allergies and Drivingp. 381
Chapter 15 Fire Protectionp. 383
What is Fire?p. 383
Home Fire Preparednessp. 384
Basic Fire-Safety Tipsp. 384
Escape Plansp. 385
Escape Laddersp. 385
Smoke Detectorsp. 386
Home Fire-Fighting Strategiesp. 387
In-Home Sprinkler Systemsp. 388
Portable Fire Extinguishersp. 388
Fire Type Classificationsp. 389
Fire Extinguisher Typesp. 390
Home Fire Extinguisher Suggestionsp. 391
Chapter 16 Understanding Pest Controlp. 393
Simple Pest-Preventive Measuresp. 393
Coping with Pestsp. 394
Typical Pesticidesp. 394
Early Pesticidesp. 395
Modern Organic Pesticidesp. 395
Alternative Pest-Control Measuresp. 396
Neutralizing Allergenic Properties of Pestsp. 397
Alternative Pesticides and Capture Methods in Generalp. 397
Alternative Pest Deterrents in Generalp. 398
Implementing Household Pest-Control Measuresp. 399
Alternative Pest-Control Information Sourcesp. 399
Obstacles to Using Alternative Pest Controlp. 400
When Typical Pesticides Must be Usedp. 401
Chapter 17 Controlling Specific Pestsp. 403
Simple Alternative Pesticide Spraysp. 403
Controlling Specific Household Pestsp. 404
Carpenter Antsp. 404
Clothing Mothsp. 406
Cockroachesp. 408
Dust Mitesp. 410
Fleasp. 416
Fliesp. 420
Grain Mothsp. 421
Micep. 421
Mosquitoesp. 423
Silverfishp. 424
Spidersp. 425
Sugar Antsp. 426
Termitesp. 428
Alternative Outdoor Personal Pest Protectionp. 435
Modifying your Behavior to Control Outdoor Pestsp. 435
Sonic Waves to Control Outdoor Pestsp. 435
Alternative Topical Lotions to Control Outdoor Pestsp. 436
Part 5 Lifestylep. 437
Chapter 18 Reading, Writing, and Wrappingp. 439
Printed Matterp. 439
Problems with Printed Materialp. 439
Storing Printed Materialp. 440
Simple Alternative Reading Strategiesp. 440
Reading Boxesp. 441
Recorded Reading Materialp. 442
Stationeryp. 444
Paperp. 444
Typical Wood-Pulp Paperp. 444
Recycled Paperp. 445
Alternative Papersp. 446
Writing Implementsp. 448
Making Writing More Tolerablep. 448
Pens and Markersp. 448
Pencilsp. 449
Computers and Typewritersp. 450
Erasers and White-Out Fluids and Tapesp. 450
Wrapping Paperp. 451
Foil Papersp. 451
Other Wrapping Paper Optionsp. 451
Chapter 19 Hobbies and Activitiesp. 453
Hobbiesp. 453
Hobbies in Generalp. 453
Arts and Craftsp. 454
Sewingp. 456
Knitting and Crochetingp. 458
Physical Fitness Equipmentp. 459
Tolerable Manufactured Exercise Equipmentp. 459
Tolerable Homemade Exercise Equipmentp. 460
Tolerable Exercise Clothing and Matsp. 460
Saunasp. 461
Traditional Scandinavian Saunasp. 461
Modern Conventional Saunasp. 462
Saunas Designed for the Chemically Sensitivep. 464
Travel Needsp. 465
Luggagep. 465
Totesp. 466
Baby Carriersp. 466
Pet Carriersp. 466
Wheel Chair and Crutch Padsp. 466
Children's Toysp. 467
Soft Toysp. 467
Hard Toysp. 467
Household Petsp. 468
Pet Care in Generalp. 468
Catsp. 469
Dogsp. 473
Birdsp. 475
Fishp. 476
Chapter 20 Telephones, Electronics, and Appliancesp. 477
Telephonesp. 477
Standard Telephonesp. 478
Cellular Phonesp. 479
Electronic Equipmentp. 481
Electronic-Equipment Odor Problemsp. 481
Electronic Equipment EMF Concernsp. 482
Choosing Less-Bothersome Electronic Equipmentp. 483
Appliancesp. 484
Small Appliancesp. 484
Major Appliancesp. 486
Chapter 21 Housekeepingp. 501
Foodstuffsp. 501
Cookwarep. 502
Nonstick Coatingsp. 502
Metal Pots and Pansp. 502
Glass and Glass-Ceramic Cookwarep. 503
Bakewarep. 504
Dinnerware and Glasswarep. 505
Cutting Boardsp. 505
Miscellaneous Kitchenwarep. 506
Household Paper Goodsp. 506
Locally Purchased Paper Goodsp. 507
Mail-Ordered Paper Goodsp. 508
Cloth Alternatives to Paper Goodsp. 509
Shelf Linerp. 509
Plastic and Cellophane Goodsp. 509
Plastic Goodsp. 510
Cellophane Goodsp. 510
Household Storagep. 511
Closetsp. 511
Miscellaneous Storage Racksp. 514
Metal Containersp. 514
Glass Containersp. 516
Wooden Containersp. 517
Wicker Containersp. 518
Part 6 Air, Water, and Emfsp. 519
Chapter 22 Indoor Air Qualityp. 521
Government Regulationsp. 521
Indoor Air Quality Definedp. 522
Indoor Air Pollution Testing in Generalp. 522
Specific Indoor Air Pollutantsp. 523
Gasesp. 523
Vaporsp. 530
Biological Contaminantsp. 532
Minerals and Metalsp. 537
Mixed Contaminantsp. 539
Chapter 23 Improving Your Indoor Airp. 543
Air Purification and Cleaningp. 543
Simple Indoor Air Improvement Methodsp. 543
Air Improvement Equipmentp. 550
Wearable Air Filters and Negative-Ion Generatorsp. 569
Breathing-Aid Equipment For Asthmaticsp. 570
Air Humidificationp. 570
Simple Humidifying Strategiesp. 571
Humidifiersp. 571
Dehumidifiersp. 575
Chapter 24 Water Qualityp. 577
Common Water Quality Concernsp. 577
Biological Contaminantsp. 578
Industrial and Agricultural Pollutantsp. 580
Suspended Particulatesp. 582
High Concentrations of Common Mineralsp. 582
Naturally Occurring Gasesp. 584
Prescription Medicationsp. 586
Water-Utility Chemical Additivesp. 587
Contaminants from Supply Lines, Pipes, and Solderp. 590
Water pHp. 592
Water Testingp. 593
Frequently Performed Water Testsp. 593
Water-Quality Concerns and their Appropriate Testsp. 593
Water Test Limitationsp. 593
Obtaining a Water Samplep. 595
Water-Test Suppliersp. 595
Chapter 25 Improving Your Waterp. 597
Water Treatmentp. 597
Common Utility Water Treatmentsp. 597
Common Home Water Treatmentsp. 598
Choosing the Right Water-Treatment Equipmentp. 618
Bottled Waterp. 636
Bottled Water Basicsp. 636
Bottled Water Typesp. 637
Storing Your Bottled Waterp. 637
Chapter 26 Electromagnetic Fieldsp. 641
Electromagnetic Radiation in Generalp. 641
Electric Current and Electromagnetic Radiationp. 642
Possible Health Effects of EMF Exposurep. 643
The EMF Health Effect Controversyp. 643
Possible EMF Exposure Symptomsp. 644
EMF Health-Effect Theories and Researchp. 645
Geomagnetic Fieldsp. 646
Other Electromagnetic Radiation in Homesp. 647
Microwave Radiationp. 647
Radio-Frequency (RF) Radiationp. 647
Ultraviolet (UV) Radiationp. 647
X-Raysp. 647
Chapter 27 Dealing with Electromagnetic Fieldsp. 649
EMFs in Your Homep. 649
Safe EMF Exposure Levelsp. 649
EMF Hotspots in Homesp. 650
Lowering EMF Risks in Homesp. 652
Further EMF Informationp. 657
Part 7 Resourcesp. 659
Resource Listingsp. 661
Suggested Readingp. 683
Indexp. 691

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