Plastic are found everywhere in our lives today. Inexpensive and easily mass produced, plastics can be found in all products available to children. From baby toys, bottles, eating utensils, teething toys and even in the equipment used for breast pumps. Every baby is surrounded by plastics. While most of these products are labeled BPA free and claim to be safe for babies, new studies have proven otherwise. Serious concerns have been raised regarding the numerous potential dangers of the chemicals that are in the plastic and that directly go in making baby toys and other nursing equipment.
So what are the toxins in the plastics that actually cause harm?
First, there are the plasticisers out of which hard PVC toys are made. These could cause hormonal imbalances in kids later in life as they near puberty. Although restrictions on the use of this is being monitored by regulatory bodies, there are still many that use it openly.
Second, a toxin that is used in many plastic toys is bisphenol A (BPA). This is the component in plastics that make them shatterproof. BPA is especially toxic as it can causes fatal diseases such as cancer, heart diseases and elevates sugar levels causing diabetes. The European Union and Canada have actually banned the use of BPA in baby items but here in America it is still in use under what the FDA has deemed to be “safe levels”.
Under recent studies it has been found that even with these so called “safe levels” the toxins in plastics are still able to leech from the item and enter a child’s bloodstream. At the end of this post I will provide you with links to recent news coverage of this problem but first I’d like to discuss ways to avoid plastics and how to keep your child safe! (*please note this post was originally written in 2017 and the articles provided are dated as such)
While plastic bottles seem to be a safer solution than glass since they will not break when dropped they actually pose a higher risk as companies are not required to determine their level of toxicity before releasing them for sale and marketing them as “safe and non-toxic.” Stainless steel is actually a much better option and Pura Stainless makes a wide variety of children and adult bottle options!
Teething toys have been found to be especially dangerous as they spend a high amount of time in the child’s mouth. A safer alternative to plastic teethers are ones made of natural materials like wood or cotton. I carry an entire line of natural teethers for this very reason! You can view them here.
Eating utensils for children are often very affordable in plastic varieties but pose risk as the toxins contaminate food and our children ingested them. Beriwinkle Kids makes eco-friendly alternatives to plastic plates, cups and utensils by making their products out of bamboo, a naturally abundant material.
Plastics are everywhere, they cannot be fully avoided by anyone BUT we can do our part as parents to protect our children from these cancer causing chemicals by educating ourselves and finding natural alternatives. If you would like more information on recent studies regarding plastics in our children’s toys and teethers please click the links below to be directed to some great informative articles.
*Please note, I am not affiliated with the companies I recommend. I am not being paid to voice my opinion of their products. The links provided are, however, amazon affiliate links.
The following links are news articles regarding the dangers of plastic teethers as discussed in this blog.