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Which Plastics are Safe for Children?

The National Toxicology Program released a draft report in April of this year that showed that BPA, found in certain plastics, may cause injuries to children and infants, specifically it has been linked to neural and behavioral effects in children and babies. In light of this new information, parents may be concerned about buying plastic cups for their children. Gail Prins, a BPA researcher from University of Illinois at Chicago, recently answered some common questions from parents regarding BPA. First, if a plastic container has BPA in it, the triangle on the bottom should contain the number 7. There is also a possibility that freezing certain plastics release dioxin, though information linking freezing to the release of toxins is relatively new. Finally, the opacity of the plastic should not be used to determine whether it has BPA in it, again, the best way to tell is to look at the number marking. There is a potential for product liability lawsuits in the future, but since manufacturers now know about the effects of BPA on children, hopefully the chemical will stop being used for children’s cups and toys.

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