Recent research study has found that baby in the womb of pregnant women can be damaged by chemicals found in perfumes and household cleaning products. It was also found that these chemicals reach the baby from the mother through the umbilical cord. The study was conducted in 27 newborn babies and 42 new mothers. The samples were tested for 8 groups of chemicals. All the tested samples were positive for 35 samples tested. Some of the umbilical cord samples contained more than 14 chemicals and two of the positively tested mother had 17 chemicals in their blood.
Helen Perivier, Toxics Campaigner for Greenpeace International said: "It is shocking that such chemicals are in the human body at any stage of our life, let alone at the very start, when the child is most vulnerable." Andrew Lee of WWF-UK said: "These chemicals should not be in products, let alone in developing babies."
8 groups of chemicals that are potential carcinogens and toxic were tested. These chemicals are Alkylphenols, artificial musks, bisphenol, brominated flame retardants, organochlorine pesticides, perfluoriated compounds, phthalates, triclosan which were found in detergents, pesticides, perfumes, textile industry and toothpastes.
Though, there is no clear evidence that these chemicals cause damage to newborn child, presence of these chemical compounds in the umbilical cord causes great concerns, as they are very dangerous to the child.
The European union is planning to change its current legislations concerning use of toxic chemicals in perfumes and other products. The new legislation will have strict implications so that the use of toxic chemicals use is very much minimal. The legislation will also monitor that strict details are made on the food information labels and the risk of using the product is mentioned in them. Mr. Lee said that 'it was vital for the health of future generations that this legislation was effective and called for a wider ban on potentially toxic chemicals'. Professor Andrew Shennan, consultant obstetrician and a spokesman for Tommy's - the baby charity - said: "It's not that surprising that we find in the blood things that are in the environment.
Professor Andrew added that, "Mother and baby communicate directly, although the placenta does filter out some toxic substances without knowing that the substances are in some way harmful, it is difficult to gauge the potential seriousness of this finding." But he added: "It's not something to be alarmed about. These substances have probably been around for years and years. "We are designed to live in hostile environments."