Everything About Formaldehyde in Furniture

Formaldehyde [1] is one of the materials used to make resins that are used in the adhesives for some composite wood products such as fiberboard, plywood, and particleboard. These are all materials that are used to make home and office furniture.  It can be classified as one of the furniture chemicals.

Now here is the catch:

Formaldehyde degrades into a gas that can be inhaled. It has a very strong odor, is flammable, and is released from products made with these resins. It is present in some paints, lacquers, and coatings used in the manufacture of wooden furniture, flooring, or any other wooden artifact.

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Dangers of Formaldehyde to health

Inhaling and being exposed to Formaldehyde on a regular basis is hazardous to one’s health. There have been reports of formaldehyde-related health issues [2] stemming from cancers such as leukemia. 

Because the olfactory system is the first part of the body to come into contact with Formaldehyde, cancers are likely to affect the nose, throat, and sinuses.

Places you can find Formaldehyde in your home

This is a list of places you can find Formaldehyde in your household [3]:

  • New furniture

  • Cabinets

  • Closets

  • Dressers

  • Wooden flooring

  • Drapery casing

  • Household items like paint, pesticides, detergents, and cosmetics.

How to reduce the level of Formaldehyde in your home

Since Formaldehyde in furniture is harmful, the level of exposure can be reduced using the following ways:

Buy formaldehyde-free furniture

Whenever you go shopping for new furniture, ensure that you go for pieces that do not have any part made with the formaldehyde resin or coating. This way, you reduce exposure from the get-go.

Buy second-hand pieces

Suppose you cannot get formaldehyde-free furniture; you may opt to go for older second-hand pieces of furniture. These ones have a lower emission rate since most of the Formaldehyde is released into the air.

Maintain good air ventilation in your home

Always ensure that you open the windows every day so that you can let in fresh air into your space each day. This way, even when Formaldehyde is released into the air, most of it is carried away with the wind.

Consider installing exhaust fan systems and air filtration systems to help get rid of such toxins in the air that you breathe.

Keep your home smoke free

Smoking simply adds levels of Formaldehyde to your space. So much so, when you ensure no one smokes in your space, the levels get to reduce and remain in the safe zone.

Take Away

Formaldehyde in furniture is clearly a danger to humans and your pets. And so this means that you should use the ways suggested above to ensure that the levels are kept in the safe zone to ensure you stay safe.

In a nutshell, avoid furniture that contains Formaldehyde in the parts, including the paint. Also, consider getting older pieces if you cannot get formaldehyde-free furniture. Next, maintain good air ventilation in your home, and finally, install air conditioning and air filtration systems to lower the levels already in your home. If you do these, you will be able to avoid getting exposed to Formaldehyde which can be detrimental to your health.

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