October 18, 2011

Working in a Salon Can Be Unhealthy for Your Nose and Throat!

We already know that small hair clippings from cutting hair can cause septal perforation and chronic sinusitis due to long-term inhalation. Worse case scenario, it can even lead to an external nasal deformity! (Read blog about this here.)

However, it seems that it's not just hair that can damage the nose, but also hair products especially to straighten/smoothen hair popularly known as "Brazilian" treatments.

In a report published by Washington Post on Oct 17, 2011, such Brazilian hair smoothing treatments often contain a known toxic chemical called formaldehyde and methylene glycol. The FDA has pronounced such products to be unsafe. These chemicals are most commonly used as a preservative to prevent dead tissue (ie, corpses) from decay.

And yet... these products are commonly used in hair salons to potentially unsafe levels resulting in health problems to not just workers, but also customers.

Common symptoms that can result from formaldehyde and methylene glycol exposure include:

• nose-running (rhinitis)
• eye tearing
• throat burning

It can also cause symptoms of chronic sinusitis, taste alteration, smell loss, dry nose, scabbing at the nose entrance, etc.

Best to avoid if at all possible!

Read the WP article here.
Fauquier blog
Fauquier ENT

Dr. Christopher Chang is a private practice otolaryngology, head & neck surgeon specializing in the treatment of problems related to the ear, nose, and throat. Located in Warrenton, VA about 45 minutes west of Washington DC, he also provides inhalant allergy testing/treatment, hearing tests, and dispenses hearing aids.

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