My Kitchen Linoleum Floor

And the Benzene VOCs

A yellow and gray colored linoleum floor in a kitchen with cherry wooden cabinets

Several years ago we moved out of our home and into our barn because the indoor air quality was making us sick. We lived in our barn for almost 3 years while we pratcticly gutted our home, removing all the fiberglass we could find, including from behind the walls. It was not until we moved back in with most everything cleaned up was I able to pin point some overlooked things. Our kitchen linoleum floor being a huge source. The floor has glass fibers in it that emit the volatile organic compound (VOC) benzene and phthalates, a semi-volatile organic compound (SVOC), which I believe are causing my reactions.

A large breed dog standing at the doorway of a kitchen refusing to walk on the floor

Ever since Spencer was a puppy he did not like coming into the kitchen. He never wanted to walk on the floor. He usually stands at the doorway. He would only come a few steps in and never hung out long. We thought he was just aloof and afraid of slipping.

A girl standing on a wooden stool doing dishes in a kitchen with a puppy sitting down watching

Walking across my linoleum kitchen floor with shoes on makes my feet go numb. If I stay long enough they will begin to hurt. If I walk on the floor barefoot the bottoms of my feet immediately go numb with a burn type feeling. My foot pain is not new, I just never considered the cause was the materials of my shoes or my own floor. So I stand on wooden furniture to do the dishes as much as possible.

A dog looking up at a person who is standing on a wooden stool in a kitchen that has a linoleum floor

My dog Mia wondering what mommy is doing up on the bench.

A red swollen hand with a large breed gray dog sitting down on the linolium floor in a kitchen

I realized a few days later that when I slide my wooden bench across the floor the air got suddenly bad. Like a chest burn. My eyes seemed dried and itchy, my back itched and my hands swelled up. The left hand swelling up the worst.

A red swollen hand with in a linolium floor in a kitchen

My hand after spending time in the kitchen.

A German Shorthair Pointer Puppy sitting on a hardwood floor in front of a linoleum floor in a kitchen

When I realized the sevarity of the situation I started keeping the other dogs out of the kitchen.

A girl in a white t-shirt and black pants standing on a wooden bench barefoot in a kitchen with a line of wooden chairs across the floor

I lined up wooden chairs so I could walk across them. I’m waiting for chemical-free shoes to be delivered.

A pair of leather boots with wooden soles in a kitchen that has a linoleum floor

I’ve been walking around all day with these all natural shoes on and my feet felt good. I came home from work and was in the kitchen doing dishes and feeding the dogs. Suddenly my feet started to hurt with sharp pain from my big toe down to the center of my foot. It hurt to walk. My teeth felt loose from sinus pressure. When I took off my shoes I realized my big toes were both numb.

I have been changing my lifestyle, going as chemical-free as possible. Not an easy task. This clean up process is going to take a lot of time. A new wooden kitchen floor is on the list.

Sharon Maguire - Updated 2-11-2020

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