Do Mothballs Cause Cancer?

Do mothballs give you cancer?

Chemical compounds in household products like mothballs and air fresheners can cause cancer by blocking the normal process of “cell suicide” in living organisms, according to a new study spearheaded by the University of Colorado at Boulder..

What to use instead of mothballs?

4 Natural Alternatives for MothballsBy: Camille Simmons.Cedar Chips. Use cedar chips as a useful alternative for protecting fabrics in your closet from moths.Airtight Containers or Garment Bags. Seal up clothes in containers as a preventive measure and to free up space in the closet.Clean Pet Crates Regularly. … Satchels of Lavender.

Are mothballs illegal to use outside?

Mothballs are pesticides intended to kill clothes moths and other fabric pests. They are regulated in the United States by the Environmental Protection Agency. … Using mothballs in a way not specified by the label is not only illegal, but can harm people, pets or the environment.

Is it safe to have mothballs in the house?

Common misunderstandings: Mothballs should not be placed in closets, attics, basements, storage chests or trunks, garment bags or other spaces other than in tightly closed containers as explained above. Gasses from the mothballs escape into the air and can cause respiratory problems.

How much exposure to mothballs is dangerous?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in the United States has established a permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 10 ppm for naphthalene. The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) established an immediately dangerous to life or health (IDLH) value of 250 ppm for naphthalene.

Will mothballs keep snakes away?

Use of Snake Repellents As with any pesticide, make sure you read the entire label before using any products to repel snakes. Mothballs are commonly thought to repel snakes, but they are not intended to be used this way and have little effect on snakes.

Are mothballs harmful to humans?

Moth balls contain a toxic chemical, either naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene. Both become a gas when exposed to air and cause that pungent moth ball smell. These gases are irritating to the eyes and lungs and may cause headache, dizziness and nausea. They are both suspected of causing cancer.

What kind of animals do mothballs keep away?

“Often, mothballs are used in these locations to control pests other than clothes moths,” Stone said. They include squirrels, skunks, deer, mice, rats, dogs, cats, raccoons, moles, snakes, pigeons and a variety of other animals.

Is it safe to put mothballs in kitchen cabinets?

Mothballs should not be used around food or food preparation areas. Mothballs are only allowed to be used in airtight containers. Gasses build up to kill insects that feed on natural fibers. Those gasses may pose a risk to people or pets if used improperly.

What chemical smells like mothballs?

NaphthaleneNaphthalene is either a white solid or a liquid with a strong odor like mothballs. It’s used to make dyes, explosives, plastics, lubricants, and is found naturally in crude oil. It is also found in coal tar wastes at former manufactured gas plants.

Do mothballs kill rats?

A rodenticide is a chemical used to kill rats and mice. … Mothballs are meant to kill moths, eggs and larvae, but are also used to keep rats, mice and squirrels away. Those containing paradichlorobenzene are safer than mothballs containing naphthalene. As little as one mothball can be toxic when swallowed.

Is the smell of mothballs harmful to dogs?

Mothballs contain a high concentration of insect repellent. Toxicity most commonly occurs when dogs ingest mothballs. … Long-term exposure to mothball fumes can also harm pets and people. “Ingestion of naphthalene mothballs can cause anemia, lethargy, vomiting, and sometimes kidney or liver damage.”

Where do you put mothballs?

Mothballs must be used in an airtight space, such as a garment bag or well- sealed container. Never place mothballs in an open closet or plastic garbage bag. Once vapors enter the home, their odor can persist for a long time.

How long does a mothball last?

four to six weeksMothballs can last up to four to six weeks, and they can last even longer if you store your garments in a tightly sealed container. Regardless of how long the mothballs last before they dissolve, the smell will likely last longer.

Can you touch mothballs?

If you touch mothballs, naphthalene can enter your body. Low levels of naphthalene have been found in some samples of fatty tissue and breast milk.