toxic toys

U.S. PIRG group recently published a report on the safety of toys that are on sale in the US market. Unfortunately, they found a lot of dangerous toys, either by the levels of chemicals and heavy metals, by a construction inapropriada presents risks of asphyxiation or as high noise levels that cause damage to the ears.

In the 2013 report, U.S. PIRG said that “there is overwhelming evidence showing that the Act of Toxic Substances Control is failing the most vulnerable consumers: pregnant women, babies and children.” Regulatory laws are improved over time, but for now remains indispensable adults to report on hazardous substances contained in the toys and take steps to prevent them from causing harm to children.

The report noted that there was no difference in toxicity between cheap toys and brand. Unfortunately, there is no sure way to know which toys are the most dangerous, however parents can try to avoid informing and following the criteria below.

According to the report, some of the toys in the United States contain the following toxic materials

Currently the maximum amount of lead allowed in toys is 100 ppm (parts per million), although the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends a maximum of 40 ppm. Although the legally permitted level is more than double than recommended by professionals, U.S. PIRG found several toys with more than the legal limit of lead, cadmium, antimony and arsenic. A toy that analyzed contained 2900 ppm of lead.

Heavy metals, especially lead, affecting the nervous system, kidneys and reproductive system and can cause learning problems, irregular behavior, delayed growth and hearing problems. If you think your child may have been exposed to high levels of lead, I platícalo with your pediatrician. It is possible to do a lab test for lead levels that the child is in the blood.

Heavy metals are found in toy jewelry for girls and plastic toys. They are added to paints used to color metal toys and plastic and also used to make plastics, including toys made of recycled plastics. In 2013 U.S. PIRG found dangerous levels of heavy metals in various toys of superheroes and cartoon characters, for example in the shield of Captain America, in the case of the Ninja Turtles and wig for Halloween Monster High. Several other such toys were recalled between 2010 and 2013.

Bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates are chemicals added to plastics mainly to soften. They are found in most plastic products, vinyl and PVC. They are part of many everyday products and have negative effects on the reproductive, nervous and respiratory systems. According to Scientific American, BPA has been linked to heart problems, infertility, behavioral problems and certain cancers.

European countries banned the use of phthalates for toys a decade ago. In the United States, three of the most toxic phthalates sies have been banned while the other three are under review. Some Latin countries also have prohibited, for example Argentina and Mexico. The United States passed a law prohibiting the use of bisphenol A (BPA) in baby products just a couple of years. Government action with respect to these toxins is encouraging. However, they probably will take a few years for these products are removed completely from the market. For while it is advisable to avoid or limit the exposure of children to plastic products, especially older or products not made specifically for infants.

Infants and children may be exposed to these harmful chemicals through breast milk or own contact, including many babies have already been exposed to these toxins during growth in the belly of her mother. It is therefore very important to minimize the use of products containing phthalates and BPA from when you start pregnancy and throughout the child’s development.

In short, they are in everything. However, public awareness of these toxic products is growing and it is getting easier to find non-toxic substitutes.

Phthalates and BPA are found in the vast majority of plastic products, especially the old products. Plastic bottles, baby bottles, canned foods and food packaging may contain BPA. Currently many stuffed dolls are filled with plastic. Read the label to identify what it is filled. Phthalates are also found in beauty and hygiene products such as lotions, powders, deodorants, perfumes and fragrances, nail polish and hair sprays. Finally they found in some fabrics and vinyl products like floors, blinds, seating and some mats for changing diapers.

To avoid phthalates and bisphenol A, look for products that specifically mentioned on the label ( “Phthalate free” and / or “BPA free”). Avoid products with fragrances and perfumes or attempts to buy non-toxic cosmetics. The Environmental Working Group has an interactive page (in English) with information on the toxicity of different brands of cosmetics and helps you choose those that are more natural. Buy stuffed animals in craft markets where you can ensure that the filler is a natural material. If there is an adequate market in your area, see page Etsy, a global network of artisans who produce every imaginable product.