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Are Leaf Blowers a Hidden Health Hazard That Should Be Banned?
Dr. Patricia A. Farrell -- Psychologist Dr. Patricia A. Farrell -- Psychologist
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Tenafly, NJ
Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Dr. Patricia Farrell
3 min read2 hours ago

Keeping lawns and streets free of leaves has turned our culture from one of using rakes to gas-powered leaf blowers and that may be a health issue.

Photo by Callum Hill on Unsplash

Due to the harmful pollutants they emit, gasoline-powered leaf blowers are known to have several detrimental effects on health. These pollutants pose major health hazards, including irreversible hearing loss and hypertension. They can also worsen cancer risk, increase the risk of hematological and immunological abnormalities, and worsen respiratory issues.

Gas-powered leaf blowers release formaldehyde, benzine, fine particulate matter, and smog-forming pollutants that have been linked to health issues like dementia, headaches, asthma attacks, heart and lung disease, cancer, and dizziness. These harmful health impacts are particularly dangerous to children, the elderly, and those who have chronic conditions. And the emissions from these units are in the tons of yearly pollutants.

In addition to the health dangers brought on by the pollutants, gasoline-powered leaf blowers have been demonstrated to have a severe effect on children’s cognitive development. The force of air from the blowers is extraordinary, with some units having wind speeds up to 270mph.

Leaf blower use has been linked to a number of health issues, especially for people who operate blowers. High pollution and fine particulate matter (PM) emissions from leaf blowers can damage the respiratory system. Additionally, the high-intensity, low-frequency noise produced by gas-powered leaf blowers can impair the hearing of those nearby and cause hearing loss after two hours of continuous use.

The respiratory system is attacked by dispersing dust and mold that develop on fallen leaves, as well as allergens, toxins, pollutants, and pathogens, into the air, especially in humid climates. Do we really want to stir up all the pollen and microplastics lying on the ground and send them floating into the air? They may not be visible to the naked eye, but your body will know of their presence. And let’s not forget the members of the fungi family we love to eat but that carry spores that are dangerous for our lungs.

Due to their negative effects on the environment and noise pollution, leaf blowers, whether gas- or electric-powered, have been the focus of much discussion. Are they ever justified? Look at the “benefits” of either.

Gas-powered leaf blowers are notoriously loud and emit unhealthy fumes that not only hurt the environment but also endanger the health of local residents and users, whereas electric leaf blowers are quieter. But noise pollution and the resulting hearing loss are also health hazards.

We know that hearing loss can be related to dementia, so that’s another consideration when we think of noise pollution related to these blowers.

The gas-powered leaf blowers have an adverse effect on the environment, in addition to being more expensive to maintain. They support negative climate change, greenhouse gas emissions, and air pollution. Additionally, the use of leaf blowers can damage ecosystems by uprooting beneficial organisms and destroying habitats.

Overall, due to the negative effects of leaf blowers, it would be prudent to avoid using them, whether they are electric or gas-powered. Alternative lawn and garden upkeep techniques that don’t emit dangerous pollutants or make a lot of noise should be taken into consideration.

What happened to raking the leaves? In fact, raking might not only provide a cleaner lawn area but also exercise, and we know the benefits of exercise.

Website: www.drfarrell.net

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Attribution of this material is appreciated.

News Media Interview Contact
Name: Dr. Patricia A. Farrell, Ph.D.
Title: Licensed Psychologist
Group: Dr. Patricia A. Farrell, Ph.D., LLC
Dateline: Tenafly, NJ United States
Cell Phone: 201-417-1827
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