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Two out of ten baby teethers with substances similar to hormones
Baby teething rings are constantly put in the mouth by small children, which is why they should under no circumstances contain harmful substances. But scientists at Goethe University Frankfurt have now found chemicals with a hormone-like effect in two out of ten teething rings tested. The deficits in product safety are a problem for consumers, manufacturers and regulators, which urgently needs to be solved, the researchers at Goethe University write in the journal "Journal of Applied Toxicology".
The scientists led by Dr. Martin Wagner from the Aquatic Ecotoxicology department at Frankfurt University in Frankfurt did not find any environmental hormones in a large number of the baby teethers examined, but not all products were completely uncritical. "The good news is that most teething rings we've examined don't contain any environmental hormones," Wagner said. However, the detection of parabens in a product was striking "because these additives are not normally used in plastic toys." And in another teether, the researchers found six previously unidentified environmental hormones.
A baby teether contained six unidentified environmental hormones
The proven parabens, substances such as methyl, ethyl and propyl paraben, are used in cosmetics as preservatives. According to the researchers, they can “act like natural estrogen in the body and also inhibit the effects of androgens such as testosterone.” The EU Commission recently banned propylparaben as a preservative in skin creams for sore baby pops because the substances in the cracked skin in the Body could get. In a teether for babies, they have no place at all. According to the researchers, the second positive teether contained six previously unidentified environmental hormones.
Infants and children particularly at risk
In view of the results of the investigation, the researchers come to the conclusion that "plastic toys can be a source of undesirable substances." Here manufacturers, regulators and scientists should investigate the chemical pollution caused by plastic toys more thoroughly, said Wagner. In general, the additives are only of limited use for the quality of the product, but could pose a health risk. Infants and toddlers in particular are at greater risk from the hormonally active substances because their development is subject to a finely balanced hormonal control. In addition, the effect of environmental hormones in babies is correspondingly higher than in adults due to the comparatively low body weight. (fp)