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SAFE HOME 101- Stores Removing Baby Products that Contain BPA

Posted by Jane Akre
Friday, June 13, 2008 12:26 PM EST
Category: Major Medical, Protecting Your Family
Tags: Safe Home 101, Toxic Substances, Cancer, Medical Devices, Defective and Dangerous Products

Many stores are voluntarily removing BPA plastics from baby products.

Part of IB’s – SAFE HOME 101 series in June- Home Safety Month

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IMAGE SOURCE: Wikimedia Commons/ baby boy and bottle/ author: Matthias Sebulke

 

While Congress is still undecided and considering measures to ban a controversial chemical used to make baby bottles, toys and cups, major retailers such as Wal-Mart and Toys R Us are removing the baby products from their shelves.

The products in question contain Bisphenol-A, (BPA) a chemical that is used to make plastics clear and shatter-resistant. The chemical is commonly used in the manufacturing of baby bottles, water bottles and food containers.

Parents are particularly concerned about the BPA found in pacifiers and the liners of baby formula cans, as well as baby bottles. The chemical can seep out of the plastic at levels some researchers believe can be harmful to a child’s development.

Scientific research has drawn conflicting conclusions.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not support a ban on products made with BPA at this time. While the National Toxicology Program, an organization made up of several federal health and safety groups, disagrees.

The national group says there is “some concern” that BPA can cause changes in behavior and the brain as well as reduce survival and birth weight in fetuses. The group is basing its conclusion on studies that have been performed on animals.

Animal testing showed low-level Bisphenol-A exposure during fetal development can alter the development of breast and prostate glands which can increase the risk of cancer, according to Dr. Ted Schettler, director of the Science and Environmental Health Network.

Federal legislators, including Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), are supporting the ban on products that contain BPA, believing the chemical is far more dangerous than many have previously believed or realized. Legislation is pending in both houses.

Wal-Mart and Toys R Us, responding to consumer demand, both issued announcements in April that all products that contain BPA will be removed from store shelves. Wal-Mart is working to expand its BPA-free product offerings and expects the entire assortment of baby bottles to be BPA-free by next year.

Toys R Us has also been working with manufacturers to phase out all baby bottles and other baby products that contain BPA by the end of the year.

How can consumers do a little detective work at home?

One way to identify BPA is to look at the plastic identification number “7” inside the universal recycling symbol on the bottom of the plastic item. That is not an absolute positive ID though as the number “7” just identifies plastics that do not fall into the 1- 6 recycling categories.   

Some are marked with “PC” which stands for polycarbonate. Clear plastic baby bottles and training cups are likely made of polycarbonate.

You can always contact the manufacturer if you are unsure.

To minimize your family’s exposure you can replace plastic with glass, ceramic or metal, such as stainless steel water bottles.  If  you do use plastic, do not put it in the dish washer, as heat and harsh detergents may cause the BPA to leech.

And avoid putting plastic containers in the microwave and wash plastic bottles by hand.    #


2 Comments

Anonymous User
Posted by Darrell Pruitt
Friday, June 13, 2008 4:19 PM EST

Most people don’t realize that dental fillings contain BPA.

While Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) supports a ban on products that contain BPA, Congresswoman Diane E. Watson (D-Ca) introduced a bill (HR 2101) that would ban mercury-silver alloy fillings.

Amalgams and composites are the only filling materials there are. If both are banned, Americans will helplessly watch their teeth rot. Then they will have to find dentures that don’t contain BPA.

This could be the perfect storm. Darrell Pruitt DDS

Anonymous User
Posted by Darrell Pruitt
Friday, June 13, 2008 4:21 PM EST

Most people don’t realize that dental fillings contain BPA.

While Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) supports a ban on products that contain BPA, Congresswoman Diane E. Watson (D-Ca) introduced a bill (HR 2101) that would ban mercury-silver alloy fillings.

Amalgams and composites are the only filling materials there are. If both are banned, Americans will helplessly watch their teeth rot. Then they will have to find dentures that don’t contain BPA.

This could be the perfect storm. Darrell Pruitt DDS

Comments for this article are closed.

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