Doctors in Canada are calling for a ban on artificial scents such as perfumes and colognes in hospitals as they can aggravate asthma and other allergies.
In a study published in the Canadian Journal of Medicine, the authors found that over 27 percent of asthma patients are ‘hyper-sensitive’ not only to scents but also to chemicals present in household cleaners, fresh paint, synthetic building materials and new carpets. The authors say that although there is still a lot to learn about how scents aggravate allergies, there is enough evidence to justify a ban on artificial personal scents in hospitals.
They conclude: "The high prevalence of asthma and its adverse effects on health and productivity argue strongly for greater consideration of the air we breathe in our health care centers. Hospital environments free from artificial scents should become a uniform policy, promoting the safety of patients, staff and visitors alike."
The authors did not discuss how a ban on staff, patients and visitors wearing scented products might be implemented.