What are Phthalates?
Phthalates are commonly known as chemical plasticizers. Their main use is to soften plastic to prevent them from becoming brittle and breaking. But phthalates are not just added to plastic as you will find them in several food items, beauty products, shower curtains, wallpaper, electronic goods, car care products and toys as well. Thus they are released into the air in several ways and you are prone to ingesting and absorbing them in many ways.
How does it affect you?
You can be exposed to the harmful effects of phthalates by touching and absorbing products that contain this toxic material. If you are exposed to it over a short period of time then you might suffer from asthma, allergic reactions while prolonged exposure to phthalates can cause infertility in men and also affect the health of pregnant women and adversely affect the health of the child to be born.
Why Pregnant Women should avoid it?
When pregnant women are continuously exposed to phthalates, it has been seen that they run the risk of pre term delivery. This leads to a chain reaction where the infant is at risk and this can result in the infant’s death. There is also high risk of women getting breast cancer, and in many cases their thyroid levels increase.
During pregnancy you must never take medicines for any other ailment as you body is the protective covering for your child and any reaction on and in your body affects your child.
How to avoid Phthalates?
There are a few tips that you can follow to avoid the exposure to phthalates .
- Most perfumes contain phthalates and once you spray it on your body, these toxic things get sprayed on your body and your skin absorbs them. Refrain from using perfumes for 9 months.
- Several lotions, sunscreens, and creams also have phthalates. Make sure you read the constitution of these beauty products before using them. There are several brands that particularly sell phthalate free products.
- Hair products like hair color, gels, and chemicals used to perm your hair have phthalates. Wait till your child is born and till you have weaned for the first few months before using these products on yourself.
- Your doctor might have asked you not to indulge in sex while pregnant. This also means that you should not use any type of sex toys as well. These items are softened with phthalates and using them means absorbing it.
- Avoid those food items that are in direct contact with plastic like cheese slices, sausages, cottage cheese and so on. Plastic contains this toxic material and you as a pregnant lady should avoid it.
- While having fruits and vegetables, wash them properly before eating them so that the phthalate laden pesticides are washed off.
Important Note –
Your pregnancy is a very important time of your life not only for yourself but also for the child inside you. Thus take extra precaution to not cause any harm to your child.
Photo Credit By: healthmix.net