Dryer Sheets and Fabric Softeners Linked to Dementia and Alzheimer’s

Before the convenience of dryers, clothes hung outside everyone’s door where the sun’s rays killed the bacteria, germs, and dust mites and the gentle breeze made them smell delightfully fresh. Then along came electric dryers and synthetic fabrics and the need for fabric softeners and dryer sheets.

No longer sweetly scented by the summer breeze, manufacturers came up with fakegrances to mask the unpleasant smell of chemically produced fabrics heated in the dryer. Created from dozens of highly toxic chemicals, frakegrances, which are virtually unregulated in the US, are known endocrine disruptors, affecting sex hormones, especially in infants. Likely responsible for a large share of the asthma epidemic in this country, fakegrances irritate the lungs. The Environmental Working Group’s scale of 1 to10 with 10 being most toxic, rates fragrance toxicity level at 8.

Besides fakegrances, fabric softeners and dryer sheets contain ingredients that irritate the upper respiratory tract and can cause respiratory problems, central nervous system disorders (loss of muscular coordination, headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, depression), confusion, twitching muscles, and convulsions. They are linked to pancreatic cancer and are neurotoxic and carcinogenic.

Mike Adams, from Natural News, says that When people use dryer sheets, they are coating their clothes with a thin film of artificial chemical perfumes. Just like other perfumes, a person’s sensitivity to these perfumes decreases over time to the point where they don’t even notice how potent these artificial fragrance chemicals are. None of this would be interesting if it weren’t for the fact that these fragrance chemicals are extremely toxic. They are known carcinogens. They cause liver damage and cancer in mammals.

Even after we turn off our dryers, these harmful toxins remain suspended in the air for hours. And no matter where we go, we are breathing these harmful toxins from the clothes we wear. Then we breathe them all through the night from our sheets and blankets which go straight to the brain’s most sensitive neurological center. If this were not bad enough, these toxic chemicals are also directly absorbed into our bloodstream through our skin as our body temperature and perspiration dissolves the chemicals from our day, evening, and night attire. And we not only pollute our own homes and ourselves, but as our clothes emit these fragrances we impact everyone that gets near us and even our neighborhoods as the toxins escape through our dryer vents. What is worse still is that these toxins are created to remain in clothing and bedding for a long time, so even if we eliminate them in our homes, it could potentially take years to eliminate them from our garments and bedding. I have heard that in some cases, they never come out.

Environmental Toxins Contribute to Dementia

From Why I Decided to Ditch Dryer Sheets, Vanessa Romero repeatedly asked her mother’s neurologist for answers as to what caused her mother’s Lewy Body Disease, a form of dementia. Consistently he had expressed with certainty, “the only thing we know for sure, is, environmental toxins contribute to dementia.” 

While investigating toxins contribution to dementia, she found a book, The Brain Wash, which revealed toxins link to neurological disease and the harmful effect on overall health. Two of the worst offenders were fabric softeners and dryer sheets.

According to neurologists and other experts in this area, the chemicals absorbed into our bodies contribute to dysfunction and disease of the nervous system. One study found more than 25 “volatile” air pollutants released by laundry products-including carcinogens. In fact, headlines from publications around the world are reporting alarming increases in brain diseases.

The Brain Wash: A Powerful, All-Natural Program to Protect Your Brain Against Alzheimer’s, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Depression, Parkinson’s, and Other Diseases

Arguably the most powerful organ in the body, the brain governs thoughts, moods, emotions, movement, speech, and every daily function. Until recently, scientists believed that this mysterious organ was protected by an impermeable mechanism known as the blood brain barrier that was understood to allow only nutrients to reach the brain without letting toxic chemicals in. However, the most recent, cutting-edge research demonstrates that this system allows many environmental toxins and heavy metals access to the delicate brain.

Unfortunately, once these substances reach the brain, it can take decades to eliminate them-decades that can result in such substantial damage as inflammation and plaque build-up in the brain.

In light of this new understanding, a huge volume of new research links environmental toxins…to brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, depression, autism, and many others.

Consider one groundbreaking study entitled, Toxic Nation: A Report on Pollution. This study found that no matter where people live, how old they are or what they do for all living, they are contaminated with measurable levels of chemicals that are known to cause cancer, disrupt hormones, affect reproduction, cause respiratory problems, or impair neurological development.

One in seven people currently live with brain disease and almost 1.2 million people are diagnosed with brain disease in the United States alone very year. The number of people with Alzheimer’s disease is expected to quadruple over the next fifty years-escalating from four to fourteen million. Another disease of the mind, attention deficit disorder ADD has increased five hundred percent in just fifty years!

Researchers at Harvard Scholl of Public Health and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine examined data on chemical toxicity and found, of the chemicals reviewed, over 200 have the capacity to damage the human brain.

One in six children has a developmental disability like autism, attention deficit, hyperactivity disorder, and others. The authors of the study suggest that the widespread use of toxic chemicals in industry is a pandemic and that childhood exposures to these neurotoxins may be linked to increased risk of additional future brain diseases like Parkinson’s.

Wool Dryer Balls with Young Living’s Essential Oils

Instead of using dryer sheets laden with harmful chemicals that can cause headaches, respiratory issues, and neurological issues, add a few drops of your favorite Young Living essential oils to several wool dryer balls and throw them in with your wet laundry. The balls actually reduce drying time and the essential oils add a wonderfully healthful scent to the wash. It may take a couple of times for the scent to linger on garments and bedding. We prefer Young Living’s lavender, orange, and lemon oil and reapply these oils about every 4-5 loads.

Although we have personally never used fabric softeners, if you feel your clothes need additional softening, add ¼ cup of baking soda to the wash cycle. I have also read that ¼ cup of white vinegar softens fabric

and eliminates the cling.


Sweet Dreams Linen or Pillow Spray

  • 4 oz spray bottle
  • 6 drops Northern Lights Black Spruce or Cedarwood essential Oil
  • 6 drops lavender essential oils
  • Pinch table salt
  • Either 2 T vodka or witch hazel or just fill with water
  • Put salt in bottle, add oils, add liquid, and shake.

You might also like to try Dream Catcher, Gathering, Grounding or Stress Away essential oils.