SaferBuilding Holiday Tips

Three Tips for the Holiday Season.

Holiday Tree Tip: Some natural trees have fire retardants.
While the tree may smell nice, you may want to refrain from sticking your nose up close hoping to get fresh air since many fire retardants have toxic ingredients. If you choose the plastic variety, remember that phthalates may be used to soften plastic and the heat from the lights may cause toxic vapors to off gas. Keep a little distance when the lights are on or if you suspect that it may be off-gassing.

Toy Tip: Phthalates in Toys & Childcare Items
The use of phthalates in toys and childcare items has been restricted in the European Union since December 1999; however, in the United States, the choice to use phthalates in toys sold is up to the individual manufacturer. The phthalates get into our bodies are suspected of causing reproductive disorders, cancer or genetic mutations. As with many products, a lot of testing is conducted or paid for by the manufacturers, so the laboratories may be biased. It is just not worth the risk until there are more unbiased studies.

Household Maintenance & Remodeling Tips:
Always check the website and how-to guides prior to any remodeling project. Many products contain toxic ingredients which leave a residue. Even if you don't mind the risk, your guests, especially those with young children or pregnant, may have adverse reactions to them.

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