Published on January 21st, 2013 | by matt0
Health and Safety – Choosing furniture for the family home
Starting a family involves a lot of planning and decision making especially before the baby arrives. Next to organizing the maternity leave, naming your child’s guardian or setting up life insurance, parents must inform themselves which products are safe for their child. Especially the bedroom of the new family member demands for planning and the consideration of many factors.
Indeed, furniture must provide the right storage solution for Lego, laptop and other such items, and should be adaptable to the evolving growth of your child, but especially health and safety risks should be taken into consideration. Thus, next to soft close drawers which prevent trapped fingers, and round-edged furniture, especially the piece’s material should play an important role in the selection process of kid-friendly furniture.
Unfortunately, many furniture pieces are made from wood based boards (MDF) such as plywood, particleboard and medium-density fibreboard that contain formaldehyde — a substance that can cause cancer. Worryingly for parents, MDF is one of the most popular materials used to build children’s furniture.
Evidence has been found that even short term exposure to this chemical below the legal limit allowable in Britain, might cause irritation to the nose, throat and eyes. Therefore, this chemical can lead to dermatitis, and affects the respiratory system of your child causing asthma and rhinitis. So, the simplest way to avoid this toxin is to buy furniture made from materials that don’t contain it.
Although pieces made from materials which don’t give of gas such as metal or glass carry the fewest concerns, solid wood furniture which are more suited to children considering their vulnerabilities ranks right up there, too.
Fortunately, some businesses such as the The Furniture Market are proud to offer natural furniture options made of sustainably sourced woods, and offer children furniture which conforms with British safety requirements.