Would you introduce your newborn baby to formaldehyde, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and pesticides? Of course not! Even when you have been told, it should not affect your child’s health, you would not need to take that opportunity. One of the first things we do as expectant parents is to prepare a nursery for our infant.
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We paint, purchase a crib, mattress, and bedding and possibly even install new carpeting in the area that our baby will devote the vast majority of their first year. Did you know that these products include formaldehyde, polybrominated diphenyl ethers, pesticide residues and other substances that could affect your child’s health and development? It’s bad enough that we introduce ourselves to these substances but it’s even worse for our kids. Babies are more susceptible to the effects of toxins than adults for many reasons.
The most obvious explanation is that infants are much smaller and therefore have a lower tolerance to toxins. Babies are also developing very quickly and any compound that interferes with the growth and development procedure will have a larger impact on them as compared to an adult. Babies also take in more air than adults in relation to their body size that means they’re breathing in more toxins than an adult. Finally, many poisonous gasses commonly found in the home are heavier than air and settle near the ground where kids play.
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There are various steps we could take as parents to make our house a more natural, safer place to raise healthy kids. Listed below are the resources of many common household toxins and what you can do to eliminate or reduce the risk of exposure for your baby and yourself. Flame retardants are most likely one of the first toxins that your infant will encounter in the house. Despite the fact that it may look as if you never get any sleep with a toddler in the home, infants actually do a good deal of sleeping–about 60 percent of the first year! That’s lots of time to spend in touch with a mattress treated with fire retardants called PBDEs.
Several animal studies have found that PBDEs develop in the body over time and exposure during critical growth periods can cause irreversible reproductive and nervous system damage. PBDEs are chemically similar to PCBs that were banned in 1976 after they have been discovered to cause cancer and affect the immune, reproductive, nervous and endocrine system in animals. PBDEs are already banned in Europe but unfortunately they’re still widely utilized in america. A natural crib mattress is vital for a healthy nursery.
Consider buying a mattress made out of organic cotton or wool and latex. The wool not only functions to regulate temperature, but can also be naturally fire retardant. A natural cotton and wool crib mattress will meet the same government standards for flammability as a chemically treated mattress but is a far more natural alternative and avoids any possible risks of PBDEs.
Most crib bedding is made with cotton, the next most heavily pesticide handled crop on the planet. Of the top nine pesticides used in cotton farming, five have been shown to cause cancer and are ranked one of the most dangerous by the Environmental Protection Agency. Even more chemicals are added during the process to convert the raw cotton into cloth. Because your baby will spend as much time sleeping, it is reasonable that their crib mattress be free of any pesticide residue or chemical contaminants. When searching for infant bedding, opt for those made with organic cotton, grown without using pesticides.
Children love to put their toys in their mouth so consider buying stuffed animals made from organic cotton, particularly when babies are teething. Another source of pesticide exposure is by damaging our houses and yards. Research suggests that children exposed to high levels of pesticides had seven times the risk of developing youth Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma(3). As an alternative to traditional pesticides, consider using cornmeal from the lawn to prevent weed seeds from germinating (available in many garden stores and online).
While there are lots of bathroom soaps and shampoos on the market made specifically for infant, frequently these are just milder variations of the adult formulation. The skin acts as a barrier for a number of chemicals however many are absorbed through the skin, a procedure that’s aided by the heat and moisture whilst bathing. Natural soaps, oils and lotions are always the best choice for your baby.
Traditional carpets and the adhesives sometimes utilised in its installation may be a toxic nightmare. Carpeting contains too many VOCs to name them all but include neurotoxins such as toluene and xylene and carcinogens like benzene and formaldehyde which might off gas into the atmosphere for decades. Older carpet comprises years of accumulated dust and grime which may promote the development of asthma.
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Chemicals released into the atmosphere develop and can’t escape especially in newer homes that are built to be airtight and more energy efficient. When the weather cooperates we can open the windows to air out the house but if it’s cold or if the air conditioner is operating there is very little air exchange between indoors and out. In families with toddlers, leaving the windows open can pose a security hazard.
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Among the least expenses things we could do is to bring some crops into our house which have the ability to eliminate chemicals from the atmosphere, acting as a purifier. Not all plants are created equal in this regard. NASA has tested and rated twelve species of plants to ascertain the best at removing trichloroethylene, benzene and formaldehyde in the air.
Gerbera daisy, Dracaena Marginata, Peace lily (Spathiphyllum), Dracaena’Janet Craig’ and Bamboo palm were the five most efficient plants in removing trichloroethylene. Gerbera Daisy, bud Mum, Peace lily, Bamboo palm, Dracaena Warneckei, English ivy and Mother-in-law’s tongue would be the best houseplants for removing benzene. Bamboo palm, Dracaena’Janet Craig’, Mother-in-law’s tongue, Dracaena Marginata, Peace lily, green Spider plant, and golden pothos are the very best plants for eliminating formaldehyde.