When most consumers think of potentially dangerous products, common household items are likely the last on the list. Toys such as fidget spinners and gadgets with other small parts are typically to blame. It is frightening to consider the number of harmful materials that coexist alongside the entire family; home, after all, is ideally a place of safety and comfort. Yet news of injuries and even death as a result of defective products are not uncommon. It is important to know the potential risks of certain products, especially if infants and children are involved.
Last year, CNN highlighted the research of an organization called Project TENDR, who claim that many of the chemicals found in everday household products can result in neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism. Although the danger of toxic chemicals may seem evident, TENDR makes clear that only ten years ago, health departments deemed these products as safe. Furthermore, other organizations have come into the spotlight with warnings that exposure to some toxic chemicals could even jeopardize healthy reproduction. Some of these common products include flame retardants, organophosphates and phthalates–all of which can be traced in various foods, cookware, furniture and other household products.
Toxins are not the only potential hazard found in furniture; according to a report from NBC News last summer, three deaths occurred as a result of faulty furniture from the popular company IKEA. 29 million chests and dressers were found to easily tip over, which ultimately posed a threat to small children. Without an anchor attaching the dressers to a wall, these pieces could transform home sweet home into dangerous territory. This news is tragic, but IKEA’s decision to recall the products altogether may have reduced risk for injury and likely saved lives.