Telegraph - Household cleaners may double risk of breast cancer

July 20, 2010

By Richard Alleyne, Science Correspondent

Household cleaners and air fresheners could be bad for women's health, new research suggests.

Excerpt: Women who regularly use household cleaners and air fresheners are at double the risk of developing breast cancer than those who never use the products.

The study of more than 1,500 women found that solid slow-release air fresheners and anti-mould products had the biggest effect.

Insect repellents, oven and surface cleaners also produced a slight increase.

"Women who reported the highest combined cleaning product use had a doubled risk of breast cancer compared to those with the lowest reported use," said Dr Julia Brody, from the Silent Spring Institute in the United States,

"Use of air fresheners and products for mould and mildew control were associated with increased risk."

Tests in laboratories have shown that some cleaning products, air fresheners and insect repellents have chemicals in them that may cause cancer.

Household Exposure Study: Cape Cod, Massachusetts