Posts Tagged ‘baby health’

Organic Baby Sleepwear – Avoiding PBDE’s

Written by admin on February 5th, 2011. Posted in Baby Clothing

Babies sleep anywhere up to 20 hours a day during their first few months so whatever you choose to dress them in should be very soft, comfortable and made from natural preferably organic fibres. Avoid buying stacks of el-cheapo singlets and onesies from the main outlets and go for just a couple of quality organic ones. Brightly coloured clothing means loads of dye and that’s the last thing you want on your new born baby’s skin. If your budget is very strained and you can only buy cheapies, just buy a couple and wash them 3 or 4 times before putting them on your baby. You can then feel you’ve done your best to rid as much chemical as possible before use. And because you have fewer of them it means they’re washed more often and that’s a good thing for getting out the dangerous chemicals they may be doused in over in China. Watch out for “fire retardant” or “low fire danger” tagged clothing as they have been treated with a nasty chemical known as PBDE.

Look out for tags saying “Low Fire Danger”. It means the garment has been treated with dangerous Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE’s).

Information on the chronic health effects of PBDE below.

“Flame-retardants are in widespread use in both the U.S. and Canada, primarily in carpet padding, foam cushions, polyester bedding and clothing, wallpaper, and the plastic housings for computers, faxes and other electronics. Most are made from variations of a chemical known as PBDE, which stands for polybrominated diphenyl ether.

According to the Washington State Department of Ecology (WSDE), in laboratory studies some PBDEs have been shown to cause problems in rodent brain development. “Most of these problems stem from pre-natal exposure and exposure soon after birth. The health effects appear to be permanent,” says WSDE. They are quick to point out, though, that levels in humans have not (yet) reached the levels that cause problems in lab animals, but that scientists are concerned because the levels in humans keep rising.

PBDEs are “persistent” in that they don’t break down but remain active in our air, water, soil and food. WSDE says that PDBEs are building up in animals throughout the food chain, even turning up in orca whales in Puget Sound in Washington and in the bodies of polar bears in the Arctic.

PBDEs also stay in our bodies, accumulating in our fatty tissue. The U.S. is the world’s largest maker and user of PBDEs, and levels found in Americans are as much as 100 times higher than in Europe, where most PDBEs were banned in 2001. North American levels, say scientists, are doubling every two to five years. Primarily, human exposure has been through eating fish, though babies can be exposed by drinking mother’s milk. Children are also exposed when they wear polyester pajamas treated with flame retardant. Indeed, PDBE chemicals easily “off-gas” from the very products they are designed to make safe.

Consumers can take precautions and avoid products that contain PBDE. Among other cautions, the Healthy Children Project recommends buying clothing, bedding and furniture made from natural fibers, such as cotton and wool, which do not melt near heat and as such do not need to contain flame-retardants.”

If your budget doesn’t allow for purchasing Organic clothing read ideas in article Pre-Loved Clothing – Avoiding PBDE’s

I may actually write a dedicated article explaining PBDE Fire Retardants and their health impacts based on findings from the Australian Government 2006 study. I’ll highlight excerpts of importance and break down the findings into key points so it’s easy to reach the important information. For those who are concerned about PBDE’s but are time poor, wading through all of these documents just isn’t possible. So stay tuned. More to come.

PASS on the Flowers: Bacteria Breeders

Written by admin on February 4th, 2011. Posted in Hygiene Safety, In the Hospital

For a woman flowers are such a lovely gift to receive at any time of the year. It’s one of those purchases you wouldn’t ordinarily make for yourself so it’s a beautiful treat to receive. But when you’ve just given birth to a beautiful little newborn the last thing you should have hovering over his/her cot are flowers with pollen and especially flowers more than one day old. Bacteria and mould begin to grow in the water soaked stems and is circulated around through the air. There’s a reason that ICU’s (Intensive Care Units) don’t allow flowers.

Put the word out that you’d love simple/thoughtful gifts that aren’t of the floral variety. We are blessed with a beautiful friend who sent us an amazing box of 0000 ‘hand me down’ clothing for our girls and it was far more useful than any bunch of flowers. To this day that gift remains the most valuable in memory. Pre washed, pre loved clothing is the BEST thing that can go on your newborn baby’s skin. Chemicals from it’s manufacture are all but gone and this fabric is second only to organic cotton garments. Pre loved’s are gold! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts Marianne xo