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12 Cancer-Causing Things You Need To Remove From Your Bedroom Right Now

12 Cancer-Causing Things You Need To Remove From Your Bedroom Right Now

It is very important consuming organic foods and making detoxification a regular part of our health routine. Creating a healthy home environment is also part of the detoxification/clean living process. After learning about the health hazards of dryer sheets and toxic cleaning products you may have already eliminated these products from your home, but what about your bedroom? We do spend one-third of our lives sleeping. Often times this is the room that is neglected.


Make Your Bedroom Cancer-Free

Creating a clean (non-toxic) bedroom can be a financial challenge, so starting small is the easiest solution. Every change you can make will have a positive impact on your health. How you begin is a personal decision based on your budget and health issues. Some people begin with replacing their mattress, others an air cleaner or bedding.

1. Replace Your Pillows and Pillow Cases with Organic Materials

Gradually working your way through the bedding , mattress , sheets,  and bed frame (if it’s made from artificial products such as particle board or MDF, see #5 below). Many people make the mistake of assuming that cotton is a safer choice than synthetics, but the fact is that cotton uses 25% of the world’s insecticides and over 14% of its pesticides. As you can afford it, replace your bedding with organic materials.

2. Replace or Remove All Artificial Fabrics From Your Bedding, Bedroom, and Closet

The reality is that synthetic materials such as nylon,  polyester , acrylic,are made from thermoplastics. These fabrics out gas plastic molecules whenever they are heated. (1) If you wear wrinkle free clothes you’re breathing in formaldehyde and plastic .You  absorb these chemicals directly through your skin.

3. Replace or Remove Artificial Clothes in Your Closet

The base for most synthetic fabrics is a liquid made from oil,  natural gas , coal, . The liquid is forced through spinneret , the fine holes of a nozzle. As the liquid emerges from the holes, it is cooled so that it solidifies to form tiny threads. These threads are woven together to make fabric.

To make these clothes more durable Perfluorochemicals (PFCs), including Teflon are added to the fabric to offer stain and wrinkle  resistant qualities. Look for clothing made of  organic materials. To learn more about synthetic clothes click here.

4. Remove Faux/Fabric Furniture

If you have any furniture in your bedroom, such as a chair that is artificial leather, it shouldn’t be in your bedroom or any room in your house for that matter. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), is often used in synthetic leather. PVC is widely regarded as the most dangerous of all plastics. It is made more flexible with the use of toxic plasticizers—typically phthalates, which are known endocrine disruptors.

Throw pillows and seating cushions that are stain and water resistant have been sprayed with chemicals that are toxic. If the fabric is a cotton/polyester blend it was most likely treated with formaldehyde and softened with ammonia. (2) Replace these when you can with an organic or natural material.

5. Remove Particle Board and MDF

If you have any furniture that is made of MDF,  melamine , particle board, , it shouldn’t be in your house, especially your bedroom. MDF is made with shredded wood that has been softened and powdered. The powder is combined with resins and other bonding agents and compacted into solid boards. The chemical that causes the most concern is formaldehyde, which can irritate mucous membranes , aggravate asthma and other lung conditions, and cause contact dermatitis. (5)

Like MDF, particle board contains formaldehyde, a known carcinogen that has been directly linked to nasopharyngeal carcinoma (throat cancer) in people. The chemical can also cause allergies, nausea ,headaches, and a burning sensation in the throat.

How Stuff Works, within two months, particle board decreases its toxicity by about 25%  , according to TLC. Particle board is only half as potent as it was new by the end of the first year. It levels off from there and can take up to ten years to run completely out gas. (5)


Look for solid wood furniture at flea markets, furniture stores, and yard sales. Glass and metal end tables and desks generally work well as they don’t outgas and are easily wiped down.

6. Remove Accent/Throw Rugs

Tile floors or wood are easiest to clean and better options for allergy/asthma and MCS sufferers. While small accent or area rugs may look nice in your bedroom, they hold onto dust mites, dirt,  and other allergens. Omit rugs and carpet if you can.

Almost all polyester is manufactured with antimony, a carcinogen that is toxic to the lungs, liver, heart,and skin.(4) Carpets are made of olefin (polypropylene). Common in rugs is Nylon, which is petroleum based synthetic fiber invented in the 1930’s by Dupont.

7. Use No-VOC Paint

Use No-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint if you decide to paint a room  becauseVOCs are unstable, carbon-containing compounds that easily vaporize into the air. When they enter the air, they react with other elements to produce ozone, which causes air pollution and a host of health issues including breathing problems, watery eyes , headache, burning, and nausea. (6)

8. Shoe Free Zone

Make your home a shoe free zone. To avoid dirt , tracking in pollen,and chemicals from outdoors in have indoor and outdoor shoes . You can also purchase a shoe or boot tray to keep by your door. When you come in from outdoors simply place your shoes in the tray to minimize pollen, dust , dirt, and chemicals from being tracked into your house.

9. Minimize Electrical Devices

You may consider moving  into another room  if you have a computer, TV or other electronic devices in your bedroom. Electronic devices can disturb a peaceful night of sleep by disrupting sleep patterns. Switch out your digital alarm clock to a battery operated alarm clock.

10. Replace or Cover Your Mattress

Conventional mattresses are stain resistant chemicals and sprayed with flame retardant  . Many mattresses are made of foam that can outgas for years. There are  sources for organic mattresses at local stores and online.

Be aware of greenwashing wherever you shop . You may consider wrapping it in a foil barrier cloth available at AFS Foil if you can’t afford to replace your mattress, . They also sell a foil tape to seal the edges. I found the tape to have a strong smell, although it does evaporate in 3-4 days. Have someone else do this for you if you are chemically sensitive.

11. Buy an Air Cleaner

House air cleaner are a wonderful investment. Do your research; there are a lot to choose from. For many people, a portable air cleaner that can be moved from room to room is a wonderful option. Buy  one with HEPA filtration, and be sure that whatever you buy does not produce ozone. Some air cleaning companies will even custom blend their charcoal filters for specific needs such as smoke, MCS ,allergy/asthma,  etc.

12. Remove Chemically Treated Drapes or Shades

Drapes and shades hide pollen, dust,  and other allerg ens. Remove shades and drapes and replace them with organic fabric drapes and shades , If you can . If the cost is prohibitive, consider bartering with a friend who can sew curtains or drapes for you. Wood blinds may also be an option for some individuals. If you are building a new home or remodeling you may consider blinds that are in between the glass, no outgassing, and no weekly cleaning!

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