Foul odors, like those that come from sewers, longstanding trash, and dirty bathrooms, compel many people to cover their nose and reach for the nearest cache of janitorial supplies for the right cleaning products. If you’ve ever faced a situation where you are surrounded by a bad smell and felt nauseous, you’ve probably wondered if the odor can harm your health.
The good news is that a bad smell on its own will do you no harm. However, if the smell is accompanied by dangerous chemicals, then your health can be affected. That foul odor you’re smelling could be an indication that harmful substances exist in your environment.
One of the most common foul-smelling substances that you’ll encounter is hydrogen sulfide, a type of gas that has a distinct rotten egg odor. The gas is produced when bacteria breaks down organic matter. Sewer gas is a good example of smells that are rich in hydrogen sulfide. You need to be careful about this compound though, because it attacks the nervous system and has the capacity to be fatal.
How badly hydrogen sulfide affects your health will depend on the length of exposure and the amount of gas inhaled. Light exposure can lead to irritated nasal passages, loss of appetite, and headache. Medium exposure can cause eye, nose, and throat irritation, coughing, and loss of smell. Heavy exposure can lead to serious symptoms such as permanent eye damage, fluid accumulation in the lungs, loss of consciousness, and even death.
The importance of maintaining cleanliness
Hydrogen sulfide is not the only bad smell that can negatively affect health. As mentioned, harmful chemicals can accompany bad smells, and although everyone experiences their health effects differently, it’s best to avoid these chemicals altogether. One of the best ways to avoid coming into contact with these chemicals is to always keep your surroundings clean.
Study after study shows the correlation between clean surroundings and optimal health. As such, it pays to clean your surroundings on a regular basis. Other benefits to health that a clean environment offers include:
- Lower stress and fatigue
- Reduced asthma and allergy symptoms
- Improved safety
- Reduced spread of germs
- Reduced likelihood of pests
For a proper clean, it pays to use the best products for your needs. If in need of quality janitorial and packaging supplies, a trusted St.Louis supplier such as Dutch Hollow Supplies can be a trusted source.
What are odors?, NY.gov