There may be BPA leaching from your baby's teether

Harold Mandel's picture
Kids and bpa

There are many teethers on the market which may soothe your baby but which may also contain low levels of BPA.

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Every baby likes to spend time chewing on teethers. However even though just about all teethers seem to soothe a baby not all teethers are healthy for a baby. Some teethers have been found to have low levels of BPA.

Personal care products and plastics often contain bisphenol-A (BPA), parabens and antimicrobials

The American Chemical Society reports that personal care products and plastics often contain bisphenol-A (BPA), parabens and antimicrobials. The government of the United States and other governments have placed bans or restricted the use of some of these compounds in certain products which are used for children. However there has not been in depth investigations of the presence and leaching of these chemicals in many teethers.

Teethers they tested have BPA and endocrine-disruptors which were observed to leach at low levels

Researchers have found that all of the teethers they tested have BPA and endocrine-disruptors which were observed to leach at low levels. Research has discovered that in animals, endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs), including BPA, parabens and antimicrobials, may potentially interfere with hormones. Harmful developmental, reproductive and neurological effects can result from this.

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The United States banned the use of BPA from baby bottles and from kid's drinking cups

In 2011 the European Commission restricted the use of BPA for baby bottles. In 2012 the United States banned the use of BPA from baby bottles and from kid's drinking cups. However there was not adequate investigations dealing with the use of these compounds to make teethers and whether or not the compounds leach from these products, Teethers are used to soothe babies’ gums as their teeth are coming in.

All of the teethers tested contained BPA

Kurunthachalam Kannan and colleagues decided to determine if teethers contained EDCs and if the compounds could leach out. The researchers studied 59 solid, gel-filled or water-filled teethers which they purchased online in the United States. Even though most of these products were labeled as being BPA-free or non-toxic the researchers found they all contained BPA. There were also various parabens and the antimicrobials triclosan and triclocarban present in most of the teethers. Furthermore it was found these compounds leached out of the surfaces of the products and into water.

This study has been published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. Researchers investigated exposure of infants to parabens, bisphenols, triclosan, and triclocarban in baby teethers. These chemicals were found to leach out of the teethers into water. This presents us with a compelling problem in dealing with the need for new laws and greater enforcement dealing with the regulation of these products in teethers. In the meantime extra efforts should be made to make certain babies use only high quality teethers.

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