When you clean the dishes with hands or in a dishwasher, you might have noticed minor stains of soap residue on the dishes. It happens with almost everyone who cleans the dishes at home, hotel or restaurant. The first question that comes to mind is if the residue is harmful to the health or not. Most of the countries force the companies to write the chemical composition of the detergents on the pack. However, in some locations, it is not mandatory. We often miss to check the ingredients and do not realize how potent these dishwasher detergents can be. We have compiled a list of chemicals found in different dishwasher detergents with their effect on the health to give you an idea.
- Ammonia: If you are familiar with the chemical, you must be aware of the fact that it can damage eyes, skin and respiratory tract.
- Cocamide Dea: Though it is a modified form of coconut oil which is completely harmful, this chemical is a possible carcinogen that means it can cause cancer.
- Coal tar dyes: These dyes though present in small amounts in most of the detergents, they can carry heavy metals like arsenic, cadmium and lead which is not good for health at all.
- Formaldehyde: The trade names of the chemical are methylene oxide, methanol and methyl aldehyde. It can cause cancer along with allergies and asthma.
- Chlorine bleach: It is one of the most common ingredients of a dishwasher and it is used in concentrated form. It can cause breathing problems and is considered one of the main reasons of household poisoning.
- Phosphates: Banned in some countries, phosphate is still used in many geographical locations in dishwasher detergents. This chemical helps in removing the food residues from the dishes. It can cause severe environmental damage and health problems.
- Glycol Ethers: These chemicals help in breaking down the grease in the food. It can cause irritation, intoxication and anemia as well.
- Sodium Borate: It can cause hormonal disorders.
- Fragrance: It feels good to use scented dishwasher but the industry uses more than 3000 chemicals to create different fragrances and any one of them can be dangerous and cause an allergic
Now you have some idea about the chemicals in the soap detergents you are using. Even the best dishwasher detergents have some chemicals so that you can get the completely cleaned dishes. In order to make sure that no one in your family comes in contact with the harmful effects of these chemicals, you should not leave any residual traces of soap or detergent on the dishes.
There are chances that your dishwasher needs repair or cleaning which may cause it to malfunction. If you wash dishes with hands, make sure that the tap water is not hard. If it is, you can use special soap or tablets available in the market to treat water before using it. Hard water also leaves stains on the dishes which are not easy to clean. Treating hard water before using it for any household work can save your family from many trips to ER. Stay safe and remember to learn about the composition of the detergents you are going to buy.