Wednesday, 5 February 2014

MDF and Chemical Sensitivities

This display board is made from MDF but well sealed

Health Risks of MDF

Medium Density Fibreboard, or MDF for short, is the wooden product many artists use when they paint in folk art style, Tole painting or Decorative painting.
It is a manufactured wood product containing chemicals that may be hazardous to humans.

The original wood is finely powdered then bonded together with resins and bonding agents. It may also be made retardant to fire, water or stains - with chemicals.

Toxic Chemicals are a Major Health Risk

The main chemical used to form the MDF is formaldehyde.

Symptoms experienced by different people from MDF are

flu like symptoms
lung conditions
chest infections
irritated mucous membranes
racing mind
racing heart
Toxic chemicals are often considered carcinogens, that is, cancer causing agents.

Other Uses for MDF

MDF is often used in building these days too. I was told by medical professionals involved in Environmental Medicine 17 years ago that MDF gives off gases from the chemicals used to make it, for about 30 years.
MDF should never be burnt in a fire, especially an indoor fireplace, because of the chemicals it gives off.

When Artists paint on this board, they also do a lot of sanding. This fine dust can get in your lungs producing irritation and asthma. Always use a mask when sanding this wood.

Children and MDF

Don't use MDF board around children or in their bedrooms. They spend a lot of time in their bedrooms sleeping and playing and they are breathing in the toxic gases all the time. Young children are readily susceptible to chest infection. You don't want to aggravate this.
Increasingly articles of furniture are made from MDF. Kitchen cupbards and shelving are among the myriad items created from MDF. The powdered dust that is the result of cutting and sanding this board are also dangerous. If you are in this industry, make sure to wear a mask. It is better to wear a mask now than to die of lung disease later on.

Sense or No Sense?

Recently I was in a factory where they made furniture. A man was spraying a piece of wooden furniture with varnish (chemical of course). He had on a mask, however the mask was keeping his neck warm instead of covering his mouth and nose!

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