How many plastic spoons are your children eating (from) everyday?
Very little is known about the impact of human microplastic exposure or its health implications. Microplastics are tiny plastic particles less than 5 mm in size that can be found in everything from household dust to meals. The ingredients and chemicals that microplastics constitute may be more of a concern than the microplastics themselves. From childhood, children frequently play and engage with plastic products. Children are constantly exposed to plastic and its ingredients, from chewing on plastic teething rings to playing with plastic tub toys.
That exposure, according to a study published in September 2021, may indeed be cause for concern. Microplastic median consumption rates for children is 553 particles/capita/day (1).
Still think that the ‘plastic problem” doesn’t concern you? Several studies have found MPs in marine waters, terrestrial soil, air, and tap water, both in densely populated areas and in areas far from inhabited centers. In other words, MPs are so common that scientists have proposed that they will serve as an indicator of the geological era we are currently living in, which some geologists refer to as the anthropocene. Furthermore, recent studies have shown that MPs can be introduced into the human body and are found in human organs and tissues.
MPs are most commonly introduced into the body orally, and have been found in a variety of foods. Most researches have concentrated on marine foods such as invertebrates, molluscs, and fish, but MPs have also been found in sea salt from various countries, primarily remnants but also filaments and films. Furthermore, polyethersulfone and polysulfone have been identified as common types of MPs found in known brands milk samples, as well as bottled water, honey, beer, plastic teabags, and soft drinks, as well as fruit and vegetables.
According to WWF, an average person ingests a total of 250 grams of plastic each year, which makes it roughly 10 plastic teaspoons on an annual basis. The most probable sources of microplastic consumption are bottled water, shellfish, beer and salt. Though the specific effects of microplastic consumption on human health are not yet fully understood. But it’s observed that high levels of exposure to microplastics can effect the lungs, liver, and brain cells, as well as sexual function, fertility. They are believed to lead to an increased occurrence of certain hormonal cancers.
Not just that, but microplastics can also cause issues with metabolism and the cardiovascular system. According to a 2020 research review, the same chemicals are also related to intellectual disabilities, and even autistic spectrum disorders. Experts agree that more research on the effects of microplastic exposure is required. However, this research and others like it lay the groundwork for acknowledging how much microplastics people can absorb.
What’s even more surprising is the fact that babies and children are ten times more prone to consuming microplastics on a daily basis, since they have several chew toys in their mouths all day, and even lay around on carpets which might be transferring a significant level of plastic in a child’s body everyday. Polycarbonate (PC) and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) are the two major types of plastic that has been found in a child’s poop, both of which are bound to alter their health to extents unimaginable; not to mention that babies have an even weaker immune system, and get sick very easily.
This has become one of the greatest reasons as to why many toy brands are trying to switch to some other alternative instead of using plastic exclusively. Due to the material’s quality of being non-biodegradable, it has already been known to the majority of people that the production and usage of plastic is going to keep proving hazardous to the planet. But it hasn’t and will not stop at that, even if there are people choosing to be ignorant to the planet, it’s high time that they open their eyes to what this is doing to their own children.
Research study authors say they intended to understand exactly how kids could have such high degrees of microplastics in their bodies. They say that checking out the kids’ everyday activities aided to paint a clearer image.
Many generally MPs are introduced right into the body orally, and also have actually been found in a number of foods. Most studies have actually concentrated on foods of aquatic beginning including invertebrates, crustaceans, and fish, but MPs have been located also in sea salt coming from different countries, largely pieces yet additionally filaments and films. Additionally, polyethersulfone and polysulfone have been reported as typical types of MPs detected in well-known milk examples and have been found in bottled water, honey, beer, plastic teabags and sodas additionally along with in vegetables and fruit.
Study reveals that endocrine-disrupting chemicals can additionally trigger issues with metabolism as well as the cardiovascular system.3 A 2020 research study testimonial notes that those exact same chemicals are likewise connected to hormonal cancers, inability to conceive, finding out problems, and also autism spectrum conditions.
Children and also teenagers have different sensitivity to chemicals than adults and this differs in the different stages of life. supporting the requirement for particular techniques. As a result, today there is a requirement to create study on the impact that MPs can have on human health, avoiding very easy mass-media alarmism as well as setting up work based on common techniques that likewise take into consideration the complete exposure that an individual can have towards plastic substances in general and/ or in the direction of chemical substances contained in plastics yet not just in these.
Plastic is a prevalent element in numerous daily products. It can take a lot of time as well as cost to purchase items that can minimize youngsters’ direct exposure to plastics. But experts claim it’s a practical action.
“One of the most important point you can do is try to restrict how much plastic you bring right into your home. Polyester, nylon, and also synthetic fibers include plastic. Attempt to put on apparel products that you have that aren’t constructed from plastic, like cotton and bed linen. If you can manage to, change some short articles in your closet that are constructed from plastic with cotton as well as linen things. You can take a look at neighborhood thrift stores for used options.
Stay clear of microwaving plastic bowls or cups. The warm can launch harmful chemicals from the plastic right into your food and drinks. Using microwave-safe porcelain or other microwave-safe materials is a far better choice. Try not to acquire plastic teething rings as well as toys that your child will conveniently eat on. Fruit pops and also non-toxic teethers might be an alternative to soothe a teething baby.
Usage containers for food that aren’t made of plastic. Ordering a glass or Pyrex dish for your child’s food can aid restrict exposure to plastics. Inevitably, the dangers associated with microplastics make the initiative to limit them worth it.
I am Stuti, I’ve been working as an Content Head at Be Zen. As a published poet and writer, my work has also been published in several publications online and in-paper, encompassing multiple countries such as The U.S, The U.K., Canada, India and many more.