Can Laundry Detergent Trigger Asthma?

Imagine getting ready to do domestic chores, some fantastic music playing in the background, and you’re suddenly unable to breathe. You struggle to find fresh air, loosen your clothes, open the windows and doors, then finally get relief.

However, maybe you’re left wondering, can laundry detergent trigger asthma? Why? Because you’ve only opened the laundry detergent bottle. 

Laundry detergent contains many dangerous chemicals that can trigger breathing complications and asthma. Exposure to laundry detergent is hazardous to children and people with a history of breathing problems.

Allergic asthma is prevalent in children compared to adults. Asthma attacks worsen when victims work out in the cold, breathe vigorously, and get exposed to dust, perfumes, or smoke.

You may think staying indoors reduces your chances of an asthmatic attack, but you know allergens are everywhere. So, the best way to have minimal asthma attacks is to know the triggers and how to avoid them.

This post have tried to answer, can laundry detergent trigger asthma?

Can laundry detergent trigger asthma?
Can laundry detergent trigger asthma?

Asthma and laundry detergent

Asthma and laundry detergent

Most laundry detergents have perfumes that can trigger asthma attacks on exposure. People with asthma are at risk of airborne chemicals and fragrances. Hence, it is necessary to avoid or wear protective gear when handling them at home or work.

Managing exposure to dangerous chemicals or fragrances is easier because you can avoid them entirely or seal the containers. Avoid scented products if fragrances cause sneezing fits, breath loss, and watery eyes.

Although laundry detergent is a major asthma trigger at home, it may pass without leting you know yet cause problems. Most detergents contain high fragrance concentrates that trigger allergy, but people love such.

Of course, you want clothes to smell good after washing but has the thought of allergic reactions crossed your mind, right?

Symptoms of detergent allergy

Symptoms of detergent allergy

Reacting to laundry detergent doesn’t mean you’re allergic to a specific brand but multiple ingredients. You have contact dermatitis as your skin is itchy and you develop a rash that doesn’t disappear after wearing freshly washed clothes.

Additionally, laundry detergent does not only irritate the skin but also the lungs causing asthmatic-related allergies. Here are the signs of detergent allergy.

  • Itchy, red skin
  • Sneezing fits
  • Skin irritation
  • Swelling in the inflamed area
  • Hot skin that’s painful to touch
  • Bumps and blisters

What chemicals can trigger asthma?

Asthma is a chronic respiratory condition that many people struggle with globally. Asthma is incurable, but it’s treatable if victims take proactive measures to live a healthy life void of attacks. Below are chemicals that trigger asthma.

Chemical Reaction
FormaldehydeAllergy triggers, carcinogens, and skin irritants common in laundry detergent, dishwashing soap as a preservative or anti-bacteria
FragrancesContains Phthalates – chemicals that can be absorbed on the skin and trigger asthma
Quaternary ammonia compounds (QUATS)A group of chemicals in fabric softeners, disinfectants, and anti-bacterial products. Moreover, they contain asthmagen, whose exposure can cause asthma in healthy people.
MethylisothiazolinonePrimarily present in cleaning products or ‘healthier alternatives. This chemical causes respiratory difficulties, skin irritation, burns, and eye damage.
Ammonium hydroxideInspite of being cheap, it’s a potent cleaning agent. It’s present in most cleaning products and can irritate the skin, eyes, and respiratory system, and frequent exposure causes asthma.
What chemicals can trigger asthma?

Anti-allergen laundry detergent

Anti-allergen laundry detergent

Anti-allergen laundry detergent is a plant-based technology gentle on clothes and fabrics. Hypoallergenic properties mean a product is free of perfumes, dyes, and enzymes but works the same as a regular detergent to remove stains and allergens.

These safe laundry detergents eliminate dust mites, allergens, dander, molds, and smoke leaving the fabric clean. Additionally, anti-allergen laundry detergent is potent and gentle in cleaning all household washables no matter how demanding, not to mention, it doesn’t irritate even the most sensitive skin.

Laundry detergent for asthma sufferers

A detergent that’s CERTIFIED as safe for asthma & allergy victims helps reduce triggers.

Certified brands are examined and tested to ensure they have no allergens and reduce airborne pollutants. If a product passes these tests, it’s approved to help asthmatics. Buy an ideal product that doesn’t trigger reactions on exposure.

The test happens under a controlled environment that imitates the real world with allergens like dust mites on fabric. After an incubation period, the period is washed using a CERTIFIED laundry detergent which must display a 95% reduction of allergens or more to qualify.

If you’re wondering what laundry detergent is best for asthma, the Renegade’s SWEAT-X Free and Clear Laundry Detergent. It’s tried and tested using this process and is certified as ideal for people living with asthma.

Can laundry detergent trigger asthma
Can laundry detergent trigger asthma

How does asthma cause inflammation?

Asthma is a disease that affects the lungs by causing blockage, narrowness, and inflammation of the airways, and as a result, breathing becomes challenging. There are two types of asthma: allergic (extrinsic) and non-allergic (intrinsic), and both can cause difficulties in talking or doing everyday activities.

People with extrinsic asthma have inflammation on bronchial tubes after contacting triggers like household cleaning products, perfumes, dust mites, and skin dander from pets. Sensitivity to environmental triggers like pollen and mold is a significant sign of asthma.

Why do I suddenly have asthma?

Asthma affects people with more responsive airways to multiple allergens and irritants, causing airway obstruction. The airways get muscle constriction and inflammation, resulting in lining swelling and excess mucous secretion.

As a result of all these reactions, victims can’t breathe normally, and they cough constantly. If the symptoms below are evident, then you might have asthma. However, we recommend consulting a doctor.

  • Wheezing
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness

The disease can develop at any age, but you can lead an normal life with proper, proactive management. Asthma is more prevalent during childhood, but the symptoms can manifest at any stage of life.

Can washing powder trigger asthma

Can laundry detergent trigger asthma
Can laundry detergent trigger asthma

Washing powder is also a combination of different hazardous chemicals like laundry detergent, and it can trigger asthma. The tiny particles of washing powder are dangerous if inhaled by a person with allergies and can result in coughing and sneezing, depending on the amount inhaled.

In the first place, cleaning is unavoidable at home, and most products are a blend of different toxic chemicals. A single or successive exposure to cleaning products can trigger asthmatic reactions. Still, you can control it by purchasing those without allergens for your safety. Take time to read product labels and only buy what will not hurt you.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can laundry detergent cause breathing problems?

Since laundry detergent contains different toxic chemicals, exposure is dangerous for children and people with allergies. They can develop breathing difficulties, sneezing, coughing, heart issues, and in extreme cases, death.

What happens if you inhale detergent fumes?

Inhaling detergent fumes will cause your throat to swell or cause breathing difficulties. Inability to breathe is dangerous because there will be no proper circulation to the lungs a

nd brain, and it can turn fatal.

Can laundry detergent cause respiratory allergies?

Yes. Chemicals in laundry detergents leave residue on fabric, resulting in respiratory complications or allergies. Choose safe products to avoid unnecessary toxins in your home.

How long does it take for a detergent allergy to go away?

A detergent allergy can disappear from three days to three weeks, depending on the severity and action taken. Most allergic rash reactions disappear alone, but if yours takes longer, an over-the-counter cream to sooth and clear it.

What is an anti-allergen wash in washing machine?

An anti-allergen wash is an ideal cycle for people with sensitive skin. The machine combines high temperatures and an extra rinse to rid garments of allergens or dust mites.

Conclusion

Laundry detergents can trigger asthma by sneezing fits, coughing, and wheezing on exposure. The chemicals in laundry detergent are hazardous to people with asthma because they’re sensitive to chemical fumes and fragrances.

Most cleaning products have allergens that can cause breathing difficulties, one of the most common signs of asthma. Therefore, if you’re more responsive to fragrances or specific cleaning products, controlling what you buy will help manage future asthmatic episodes, improving your quality of life.

You can learn more: can you use laundry detergent as bubble bath?

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