Why I don't like Fabreeze

Recently, I traveled by train and someone (who didn't work for Amtrak) kept walking the length of the train spraying Fabreeze. I insisted that he stop. I've also encountered it in public restrooms.

I looked up the ingredients in this popular air freshener spray and what I found was not surprising, because my body told me on more than one occasion, "This is very bad for me."

The ingredients in Fabreeze, as provided on their website, include: Cyclodextrin, Dimethizone, Sodium Hydroxide, Benzisothiazone, Didecyl Dimethyl Ammonium Chloride, Diethylene Glycol, and Polyamine Polymer.

I researched these ingredients, and this is what I found.

Cyclodextrin increases permeability through mucous membranes and as a result, increases the bioavailability of other ingredients into tissues.

Dimethizone is a silicon-based polymer that creates a plastic-like barrier in tissues that traps bacteria and impurities. It is in cosmetics, which accumulates just under the skin and causes damage, but airborne I hate to think of what it does in the lungs.

Sodium Hydroxide is a corrosive acid that decomposes proteins and lipids (fats) in living tissue, causing chemical burns. Again, in the lungs this is a problem.

Benzisothiazone is toxic. It irritates skin, eyes and lungs. It is linked to systemic contact dermatitis via airborne contact. There are no safe levels.

Didecyl Dimethyl Ammonium Chloride has been found to cause infertility and birth defects.

Diethylene Glycol is not allowed in food and drugs due to its toxic effects. It has been used as a counterfeit ingredient for glycine (glycerol) or propylene glycol in cheap products, has caused mass poisonings and many deaths in different countries around the world. Symptoms of poisoning begin with gastrointestinal symptoms, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea and neurological sumptoms; including central nervous system depression and mild hypertension. Then, metabolic acidosis resulting in kidney failure. Also, hypertension, tachycardia, cardiac dysrhythmia, pancreatitis, hyperkalcemia and mild hypoatremia. Finally, lethargy, facial paralysis, dyspnoea, dilated/nonreactive pupils, quadriplegia and coma leading to death within 10 days of consumption. Perhaps you aren't drinking it, but it is absorbed into the blood stream from the mucous lining of the lungs as lower concentrations. Consider that perhaps your milder symptoms could be caused by chronic, low level exposure to this avoidable toxin, which is being made more bioavailable due to the first ingredient listed.