Formaldehyde is a dangerous chemical. It can irritate the lungs and lead to nosebleeds, scratchy eyes and sore throats. It can lead to the development of cancers in the body and may make existing breathing conditions worse.
Formaldehyde is found in industrial settings, but it's also located in places you may come into contact with on a regular basis. For example, nail salons may expose workers and clients to unsafe levels of formaldehyde or other carcinogens.
Brazilian blowouts, which are performed in hair salons, also pose a threat. The level of formaldehyde exposure could be up to 100 times the limit for an occupational hazard sign. Getting a Brazilian blowout could lead to an increased risk of brain cancer, lymphoma or leukemia.
The good news is that those who sell, manufacture, use or distribute products containing formaldehyde may be held liable for any injuries to employees or clients.
As a client of a hairdresser or other professional, it's your right to know which chemicals you're being exposed to. It's always a good idea to ask what is in dyes or nail polishes when you're receiving a service. If there is an alternative to formaldehyde, it's likely better for you and could have fewer risks.
Not all sources of toxins like formaldehyde are obvious, but it's important to report it if you're struggling with the symptoms listed above. Your medical provider may be able to help you recognize injuries caused by formaldehyde, so you can file a lawsuit against those who have used it or exposed you to it without your knowledge.
Source: FindLaw, "When to Sue for Formaldehyde Injuries," accessed April 17, 2018