If you have recently been on a cleaning spree and accidentally mixed Lysol and bleach together, you may be worried about the potential dangers and what you can do to fix the issue.
Different Lysol products have different compounds in them, but you should always assume that the one you mixed with bleach will cause a dangerous chemical reaction. Ventilate the area as best as possible and remove yourself from the room. Seek medical attention immediately if you are having difficulty breathing.
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Why Is It Dangerous to Mix Lysol with Bleach?
Bleach by itself is already a very strong chemical. It also can be volatile when mixed with a number of other cleaning products.
Some Lysol products have ammonia compounds in them. Ammonia mixed with bleach creates chloramine gas – a very dangerous and toxic gas, especially in large quantities.
Exposure to chloramine gas will cause irritation in the eyes, nose, and upper respiratory tract. It can cause permanent scarring in the airway and the lungs. Prolonged exposure without medical attention can be deadly.
Certain Lysol products also contain an ingredient called ethyl alcohol, a.k.a ethanol. When alcohol is mixed with bleach, it creates the well-known chemical Chloroform.
While sometimes hyped up as the chemical of choice of nefarious criminals, it was originally used as a sedative in surgeries before anesthesia became common. And that’s exactly what it will do to you – knock you out.
Can I Mix Lysol and Clorox?
Not every Lysol product contains ammonia or alcohol, and not every Clorox product contains bleach because Clorox is a brand name and not a substance itself.
Regardless, you should never mix any kind of bleach with anything but water to dilute it. And you should never mix Lysol with any other cleaning product, especially bleach.
Symptoms of Chemical Exposure
Sometimes you may not realize you have made a mistake until you start to notice certain symptoms.
The first and most common symptom of toxic chemical exposure from cleaning products is a headache and dizziness. This is your first sign to leave the room immediately, get fresh air, and contact a poison control center.
Next, you may experience coughing, burning in the chest, throat, and eyes, as well as vomiting. These symptoms can appear suddenly and progress rapidly. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, seek medical attention right away.
If you ignore these symptoms, you could lose consciousness and the consequences can be life-threatening.
What to Do If You Are Exposed
Remain calm and follow the appropriate steps to avoid any potential health risks.
Leave the Area Immediately
First and foremost, if you are experiencing any symptoms at all, leave the area immediately before you attempt to remove the chemicals. Contact medical services right away if your symptoms are severe or do not alleviate within a few minutes.
Ventilate the Room
After your symptoms have alleviated, go back into the room and try to ventilate it the best you can. If you have windows, open them up to allow fresh air in and the toxic vapors out. Keep checking the room every hour until the smell is gone.
Remove and Dilute the Chemicals
Carefully take the bucket to an outside area if you can do so safely and make sure all other people and animals remain clear of the area. Dilute the mixture with water to hasten the neutralizing process.
If you mixed Lysol and bleach in the toilet bowl, close the lid and flush it. Then flush it again several times over the course of an hour. You also need to throw away any cleaning supplies that may have come in contact with the mixture, such as brushes or rags.
Then, wipe down every surface with water to remove potential residue and throw those rags away as well.
Call Emergency Services
If you mixed a large quantity of the chemicals together, or if you are feeling unsafe to reenter the area, call emergency services in your area and let them know there is a potential toxic gas situation.
Playing mad scientist at home could result in some very dangerous chemical reactions. Whether it’s you or your maid, finding yourself in a precarious situation after mixing Lysol and bleach together shouldn’t be taken lightly. Take every precaution to remove the mixture and yourself from the area.
And please, seek medical attention right away if you are feeling ill.