The Dangers of Bleach (and Safer Alternatives)

Have you ever wondered how bleach works as a disinfectant?

Bleach or sodium hypochlorite is a powerful oxidizing agent. It’s the same quality that makes it a good stain remover. Viruses, bacteria, molds, and fungi die when they come in contact with sodium hypochlorite.

This is why many people reach for bleach when it’s time to clean their bathroom and other areas of their home. It’s practical, effective, and they’re readily available in supermarkets and grocery stores.

But as effective as bleach is as a disinfectant, it’s not 100% safe. Let’s take a closer look at the dangers of bleach and why you may want to consider safer alternatives.

Is Bleach Toxic?

The typical concentration of sodium hypochlorite in bleach ranges from 5 to 10 percent. When swallowed, it can cause burns in one’s mouth, throat, stomach, and gastrointestinal tract. And when consumed in large amounts, it can lead to extremely low blood pressure and eventually, heart failure.

Sodium hypochlorite is also a skin irritant. If ever it gets in contact with your eyes, it may cause – aside from severe irritation – conjunctivitis, and even corneal damage.

But the most dangerous thing about bleach is when it’s mixed with other chemicals. You don’t ever want to mix bleach with an acid, for example, as that will release pure chlorine, a poisonous gas that severely affects the respiratory tract and lungs.

Another combination you would want to avoid is bleach and ammonia. Such a combo creates chloramines, which are poisonous compounds that cause similar effects as chlorine gas.

Safer Alternatives to Avoid Bleach Side Effects

If you’ve decided to eliminate your exposure to bleach and go for safer alternatives, you’ll be glad to know that lack of options is one thing you’ll never have to worry about.

For cleaning household surfaces, you can use hydrogen peroxide. Or you can mix it with lemon juice and water, put it in a spray bottle, and use it as an all-around household cleaner.

Another good substitute for bleach is distilled vinegar. And don’t worry. Using it to clean your house isn’t going to make everything smell vinegary.

Once vinegar dries, the smell will dissipate and just leave your place fresh and clean.

Other cleaning agents you should consider instead of bleach are lemon juice or lemon essential oil, baking soda, liquid castile soap, and borax.

Say Goodbye to the Dangers of Bleach

Now that you know all about the dangers of bleach, making the switch to safer cleaning products should be an easy decision to make. If you’re used to buying bleach regularly because it’s what is readily available and can clean things in a jiffy, just think about your health and that of your loved ones, too.

You wouldn’t want to put them at risk when you know that there are safer alternatives on hand. Besides, bleach isn’t just dangerous to people and pets. It’s also not good for the environment.

If you just want the convenience of not having to mix different cleaning agents yourself, we can help. Our chemical-free cleaning products are safe for your family, safe for the environment, and will save you money.

If you have any comments or questions on the dangers of bleach that you would like to share. Please share them in the comments section below.

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