6 Cautions about Pesticides and Herbicides

When you spray pesticides to kill garden or household critters, douse your lawn with chemical herbicides, or spray your dog for fleas, you’re also exposing your kids (and yourself) to these toxins. Think about it: These concoctions are designed to kill insects and weeds. Even if you use them as directed, they still have the potential to cause a wide range of health problems in people because of their toxicity. Here are six cautions and alarming thoughts:

1. No one guarantees the safety of pesticides. Just because a product is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) doesn’t mean it’s safe.

2. Pesticides have been traditionally treated as “innocent until proven guilty” by regulatory authorities. A generation ago, pesticides were considered to be relatively safe and effective chemicals that produced significant benefits to society.

3. Many older pesticides have not been thoroughly tested by today’s standards. These pesticides are still commonly used even thought complete testing of these older pesticides will take at least another 10 years.

4. Most pesticides in use today have not been tested for their health effects on children. This is a major problem. Recent scientific studies involving laboratory animals show that many pesticides damage the developing brain and nervous system.

5. Certain types of pesticides mimic hormones. Scientists have discovered that some pesticides have the ability to mimic or compete with hormones (the chemicals in our body that trigger development and functioning.

6. Many herbicides are know, probable, or suspected carcinogens (cancer-causing chemicals).

Adapted from Raising Healthy Children in a Toxic World, by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. Copyright (c) 2001 by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. Reprinted by permission of Rodale Press.
Adapted from Raising Healthy Children in a Toxic World, by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. (Rodale Press, 2001).

75 comments

Winn Adams
Winn Adams3 years ago

Thanks

LMj Sunshine

Thank you for sharing.

LMj Sunshine

Thank you for sharing.

Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Faith Billingham
Faith Billingham4 years ago

thank you for this article

Laurita Walters
Laurita Walters4 years ago

Interesting how it is so difficult for Americans to realize that poison POISONS THINGS!!! Spreading poisons around your home and yard is insane. What in the world are they thinking?

KS Goh
KS Goh4 years ago

Thanks for the article.

paul m.
paul m.4 years ago

I don't use pesticides........

Virginia C.
Virginia C.5 years ago

People should be more careful using weed killer and realize the serious effects it can have on people around them, I have been effected twice in the last year with "Pulmonary irritation from weed killer" I ended up in Hospital last year with it, and in the last few days again I was effected by it at work.

Bon L.
Bon L.5 years ago

Thanks for the info.