Big box stores pose threat to people allergic to polyurethane

Last Updated: Sun, Mar 14, 2010 07:10 hrs

People allergic to polyurethane could face problems if they shop at a big box store because many of the products there contain that substance.

Products that contain polyurethane include memory foam mattresses and some pillows.

Allergic reactions to polyurethane can include itching eyes or skin, difficulty breathing, an irregular heartbeat and other symptoms.

It isn't just touching the product that causes problems because polyurethane exudes fumes into the air.

Sleeping on these mattresses and pillows can expose one to highly toxic chemicals such as Tolulene Di-isocyanate (TDI) used in manufacturing ; online forums are filled with reports from consumers who experienced a set of symptoms ranging from itchy eyes and skin to difficult breathing, irregular heartbeat, and more.

Pillows and mattresses may present the most immediate threat to consumers' health, but the sheer versatility of polyurethane-used in foam seating, wheels and tires, adhesives and sealants, carpet underlay, footwear outsoles, simulated wood, paints and varnishes, tennis racket handles, watch band wrappings, and even surfboards-ensures that it can be found all over the typical big-box store.

"A stroll through the aisles of the typical large retailer reveals an array of supposedly safe products that are anything but eco-friendly," said Bill Doyle, President and CEO of Vystar Corporation.

Vystar is the creator of Vytex Natural Rubber Latex (NRL), a patented, all-natural raw material that significantly reduces antigenic proteins found in over 40,000 products made with natural rubber latex and that are believed to cause latex allergies.

Doyle said: "In big-box stores. I have found labels advertising specific products as eco-friendly-labels that were themselves coated in eco-unfriendly polyurethane. (ANI)

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