Ban These 7 Allergens from Your Home

Battle wheezing, sneezing and rashes by eliminating mold, dust mites and more
formaldehyde allergen Photo: Khongkit Wiriyachan/Shutterstock
woman with allergies
washing the mold away
cleaning the sink
woman fighting the dust
boy allergic to cat
woman showering away the pollen
allergy to fragrance
formaldehyde allergen
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Formaldehyde

This colorless chemical can be hiding in fabric, shampoos and conditioners, baby wipes, nail polish, paper products, medications and vitamins, paint and cosmetics. Sensitivity to formaldehyde can lead to respiratory symptoms and contact dermatitis. To avoid this trigger, choose clothing and household items made of 100 percent cotton, silk or polyester rather than fabrics treated with formaldehyde resins (such as permanent press, waterproof, anti-cling). Run machine-washable clothing and bedding through a hot water cycle before wearing or using it. Look for “formaldehyde-free” or “toxic-trio-free” on shampoo, conditioner and other personal care products. If you purchase something made of composite wood, check to see that it’s “certified as compliant with ANSI/HPVA HP-1-2009 (for hardwood plywood), ANSI A208.1-2009 (for particleboard), or ANSI A208.2-2009 (for medium-density fiberboard),” advises the EPA. If you do bring something into your home that contains formaldehyde, open windows and doors and turn on an exhaust fan. “Avoid strong aerosols, cleaning chemicals and solvents, especially if you already have a respiratory issue like asthma,” adds Bassett.