We have replaced the standard light bulbs, and now we use energy saving bulbs in order to save money. However, these light bulbs are very toxic and there is a special protocol that you must follow if the light bulb breaks. When these light bulbs break a poisonous gas is released. According to studies, broken energy saving light bulb releases 20 times more mercury than it is acceptable for an indoor place.
The energy saving light bulbs can cause:
• Cluster headaches
• Lack of concentration
Go back to incandescent bulbs, since energy saving bulbs can cause migraines, anxiety and cancer.
1. These light bulbs contain mercury – neurotoxin.
It is especially dangerous for pregnant women and children. It is toxic to the entire body, especially the kidneys, the brain, the liver and the whole nervous system. The cardiovascular, reproductive and immune system can also be damaged by this toxin. Mercury can lead to Alzheimer’s disease, tremors, cancer, anxiety, headaches, insomnia and memory loss.
2. These light bulbs can cause cancer.
According to a recent study, energy saving light bulbs can cause cancer since they contain poisonous carcinogens such as phenol, naphthalene and styrene.
Phenol is used in chemical manufacturing and found in coal tar.
Naphthalene is used raw for chemical manufacture and in mothballs. It is produced from coal tar.
The petroleum byproduct found in energy efficient light bulbs is styrene.
3. These light bulbs emit Ultraviolet rays.
UV-radiation is dangerous for the eyes and skin. It can cause skin cancer. The radiation harms the immune system. This prevents the proper formation of the vitamin D3.
In conclusion, these light bulbs save energy and money, but they pose very dangerous health risks. So, start using the regular incandescent bulbs. When changing the energy saving bulb, be especially careful. If it breaks, follow the protocol of the Environmental Protection Agency that is described further in this article.
The official Environmental Protection Agency protocol for a broken energy efficient light bulb
According to the Environmental Protection Agency of the United States, you must follow this procedure if an energy efficient light bulb breaks in your home. This protocol exists since the light bulbs contain poisonous gas that is released in the room after the breakage.
Before starting the cleaning up process
1. All pets and people must leave the room.
2. Leave a door or window open for 10 minutes.
3. Turn off the central air-conditioning or air heating system.
The materials that you will need to clean up the parts of the broken energy saving light bulb:
• Cardboard or a stiff paper
• A sealable plastic bag or a jar with a lid
• Sticky tape
• Disposable wet wipes for hard surfaces or damp paper towels
The cleaning up process
• Vacuum only if you are done with all the steps of the cleanup. Vacuuming spreads the mercury vapor and the powder that contains mercury.
• Collect all the broken glass and powder. Use the cardboard or the stiff paper to collect all the glass parts and powder. Pick up the remaining small glass parts and powder using a sticky tape like duct tape. Then, place the tape in the sealable plastic bag or the glass jar.
• Finally, place all the used materials in a sealable container.
After the cleaning up process
1. Place all the energy efficient bulb debris and cleanup materials outdoors in a protected area or a trash container. Don’t leave the bulb debris or material at home.
2. Some local governments require this kind of debris to be taken in a recycling center. Take the debris and materials to a nearby recycling center if so. If there are no such requirements, dispose of the debris and the materials with your trash.