All the future mothers dream about the moment they’ll hold their babies in their arms. Every pregnant woman wants to have a healthy baby, therefore every pregnant woman adopts a new lifestyle with a healthier diet, mild physical activity, periodical visits to the gynecologist for the regular pregnancy controls, and so forth, but the babies in the wombs are put at risk by some products that are indispensable for any household, because many pregnant women may lack info on household toxins.
A study confirms that pregnant women may lack info on household toxins
Researchers from the University of Bristol trigger an alarm signal for all the future moms, that the use of unsuitable cleaning products during pregnancy can have serious repercussions on the fetus, inducing serious respiratory problems at birth.
The study was conducted by the scientists on 14,000 children from approximately 7,000 families. The conclusion was that a strong link exists between the prenatal exposure to various household toxins and respiratory problems the baby confronts with after birth. Thus, children subjected to various toxic substances are twice more prone to respiratory ailments that can degenerate into asthma, in comparison to the children who were not exposed to toxins during pregnancy.
And the most disturbing fact uncovered by this study is that pregnant women may lack info on household toxins because very few of the mothers of the tested children were aware that common products such as dishes detergents or air fresheners contain substances that can be toxic for the unborn babies.
Experts considered that the cleaning products are indeed quite unbearable by unborn babies, infants, and very young children. Some of the ingredients the cleaning products contain can create real big problems for the babies, starting with respiratory issues and reaching to other diseases that are more severe.
For example, one of the most harmful substances that can be found in cleaning products is the sodium hypochlorite which has an irritating effect on both respiratory and cutaneous levels. The children can be affected by this substance’s vapors even in a short period of exposure, while the babies in the wombs are affected when their mothers inhale sodium hypochlorite vapors which pass to the babies through the blood stream. It is essential for future mothers to pay attention to what products they use for cleaning, during pregnancy but also after childbirth.
In the study were taken into consideration dozens of products of different types that are commonly used in any household, such as:
- cleaning products
- bleaching products
- air fresheners
The study uncovered the fact that frequent usage or usage of a high amount of one or more of these products at a time really affect unborn babies increasing the risk of developing respiratory problems.
Recommendations on which products to use and how to minimize the risks
We’ve already learned that many pregnant women may lack info on household toxins contained by various cleaning products, paints, and so forth. So, how the future mothers can maintain a clean environment, free of germs but harmless for their unborn babies health and for themselves, as well? Here are few recommendations on which products to use:
- Pregnant women and mothers of very young children should be very careful about the ingredients that the products they use are made of. It is recommended to thoroughly read the list of active ingredients, so choosing a product that is less harmful. Products for cleaning and disinfection which are not containing sodium hypochlorite are suitable to use because they won’t cause respiratory or cutaneous irritations.
- Carefully read the producer’s indications of usage. It may be needed to rinse well after usage, to mix with water, or to avoid mixing the product with other substances.
- It is better not to use too many cleaning products, sprays, and air fresheners at the same time because they can be very irritating.
- Pregnant women or mothers of young children should avoid exposing to strong and irritating odors that are emanated by the cleaning products.
Specifically, what household toxins are risky and how to avoid risks?
There are dozens of different types of products which are containing dozens of toxic substances that can affect the unborn babies and even the adults in the house. Sounds like a crazy statement, but even the air fresheners contains toxic chemical substances that may cause allergies or irritations. Of course, it depends on how resistant a person is, and many adults are not affected by these products, but when it comes to an unborn baby that needs all the protection in the world during pregnancy, why to put him at risk?
Dyeing or painting products.
Industrial paints and solvents contain chemicals that can endanger your pregnancy. It is better that during pregnancy to postpone painting door frames, fences painting, or you even have to drop on your art painting hobby, or otherwise you may put your baby at risk.
The solvents in dyeing and painting products increase the risk of fetus malformations and miscarriage.
Doctors advise you to avoid rooms that are freshly painted.
Make sure you live in a home that is relatively recently built or redecorated. If you need to redecorate the house or to design a special room for your future baby, ask your partner to do it or call for a redecoration professionals, while you take off for at least 2 days.
Detergents and other cleaning products.
Cleaning the house is really important for keeping the health of the entire family. In order to keep your house clean, free of germs and bacteria, you need to use some special detergents and cleaning agents. But when you’re pregnant, your health and concern for the fetus proper development are also very important. There are several cleaning products that you must avoid at all costs during this period.
For example, cleaning products and polishers contain glycol ethers, which are toxic solvents that increase the risks for miscarriage. The mildew remover contains phenols, known to have the effect of increasing the risk of birth defects or death of the fetus.
There are other products or detergents, which are not dangerous to the fetus but which can worsen the symptoms of nausea during pregnancy, such as ammonia or chlorine.
Thoroughly read the cleaning products’ labels to make sure they do not contain toxic compounds that can endanger your pregnancy and keep the windows wide open while cleaning your house.
You can always opt for bio or ecological cleaning products.
Prolonged exposure to pesticides can endanger the fetus. Pregnant women who live in agricultural areas where pesticides are constantly used are more put at the risk of giving birth to babies with malformations.
Do not use any insects repellent containing DEET (diethyl-m-toluamide).
So, if living on a farm or in a rural area where are constantly used such products, keep in mind the following tips:
Stay isolated when they dust the fields
Ask someone else to spray the pesticides in the garden
Use gloves when gardening
Thoroughly wash the fruits and the vegetables you bought or got from the neighbors
If you’re pregnant that doesn’t mean you do not have the permission to do your manicure.
Experts recommend avoiding the overuse of nail polish, acetone, nail glue for UV nails, or other products that contain solvents. Brief and occasional exposure to these products will not endanger the fetus, but the overuse or misuse of these products could increase the risks for an illness which will affect your unborn baby, too.
When you’re doing your manicure during pregnancy and using toxic manicure products, do it in a well-ventilated room.
Hair dye and perm products.
There is no clear evidence that products used to achieve a permanent hair dying are dangerous but could become dangerous if you’re allergic to a specific product and you don’t know it. The fact is that these substances contained in perm dyes penetrate the scalp and enters into your bloodstream, and normally will get to the fetus, too.
Experts do not recommend using these products, especially in the first trimester, when fetal organs are in the process of development.
You can opt for organic products for hair care, styling, and coloring, which poses no such risks.
Your cat’s litter.
Stay away from your cat’s litter during pregnancy to avoid the infection with toxoplasmosis, a parasitic infection that causes many health problems in the fetus. Ask your partner to clean the litter but if you’re forced to do it yourself don’t forget to use disposable gloves.
Pregnancy is a period of transition, not for you but for your future child. The new life that is growing inside your womb needs your protection even if is inside your tummy. What you eat, what your drink, how much you’re exposing to the sunlight, what you inhale, what medicines you take, all these and much more are affecting your unborn baby, in a good way, or a bad way.
The fact that pregnant women may lack info on household toxins is not blamable because no one learns such things from TV commercials or online ads, which are meant to sell to anyone without telling you about the risks you may expose to when using these products. It’s your job as a future mother to learn such things and to protect you baby, and hopefully, you’ve learned something from this article.