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Baby’s and small children are particularly vulnerable to toxins in the environment. After birth, your baby will spend much of its time in his or her nursery and exposed to toxins. In this post, I will bring you simple tips to detox your baby’s nursery and keep your little one safe.
Developing fetuses, baby’s and small children under the age of three are particularly vulnerable to certain environmental toxins. One in six United States children has one or more developmental disabilities, from a subtle learning disability to overt behavioral or emotional disorders (1). Exposures to environmental toxins have been linked with higher rates of mental retardation, intellectual impairment, and behavioral problems, such as conduct disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. (2) I know this is scary, but it’s exactly the reason I am bringing you simple ways to detox your baby’s nursery.
Simple tips to detox your baby’s nursery…Let’s start with the baby’s sleep space.
- Get an Organic Crib Mattress
A study by the University of Texas showed that:
- New crib mattresses release about four times as many VOCs as old crib mattresses.
- Body heat increases emissions.
- Chemical emissions are strongest in the sleeping infant’s immediate breathing zone.
Why organic crib mattress?
To help keep chemicals and dangerous flame retardants out of your baby’s nursery as well as minimize allergens. Some research shows flame retardants coupled with the heat a baby puts off may be linked to SIDS. There is also research around serotonin in the brain and dysregulation of breathing, so I don’t want to make any implication the flame retardants are the exclusive cause. The research around chemicals, like flame retardants was enough to compel me to take the extra measures to keep my baby safe.
The materials used in organic mattresses are also more environmentally friendly.
What crib mattress is best?
Mattresses I recommend:
*These all have a lifetime warranty
2. Reduce or remove toxins from clothing
“There’s more than 8,000 chemicals in the textile industry. We’re so concerned with the chemicals we ingest, but people fail to realize with skin being the largest organ system, that it absorbs everything it comes in contact with.” Dr. Saman Soleymani, medical director from Avecina Medical.
Due to lack of regulation, even organic clothing isn’t necessarily any safer as clothing can legally be treated with bleach, formaldehyde to prevent shrinking, ammonia, heavy metals (in dyes), phthalates, VOC’s and more.
I could go on and on with the data but there are 3 simple ways to ensure safe clothing for baby.
Buy GOTS and/or Oeko-Tex certified clothing.
Certified brands include:
Buy used or hand me down clothes.
Chances are these clothes have been washed enough times that any chemicals/flame retardants have been removed.
And….Rinse in hot water and vinegar.
No matter where my sons clothes come from I do a 24 hour soak of about 2-3 cups of non-GMO vinegar and the hottest water possible. I just use the sink or bathtub and usually repeat the process twice and then wash clothes in hot water with my favorite non-toxic laundry soap and an extra rinse. Don’t forget to do the same with blankets, towels and other linens for good measure!
3. Off-gas and air out new toys and furniture
Like mentioned above, new, manufactured products release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other harmful chemicals into our homes. During the production process, products inhale gaseous chemicals. When these products are unwrapped, they exhale this gas into our homes.
This process is simple. Buying used is a great option as well as, air out all new toys and furniture for as long as possible. You can also consider a few plants in baby’s nursery as well as a high quality air purifier. If painting baby’s nursery, consider zero VOC paint.
4. Use caution with what goes on baby’s skin
The food we eat and even to some degree the air we breathe have some filtration. The same is not true for our skin, therefore toxins are easily absorbed and go into our organs (more on that here.) This is especially true for our developing baby’s. A good rule of thumb if t touches baby, it MUST be non-toxic and safe.
Products to consider:
- Baby wash
- Baby lotion or oil
- Diaper cream
- Safe laundry soap for the family, since all will hold and touch baby
- Safe makeup and lip products for mom, since we kiss baby, and baby will be rubbing against our face.
Anything with fragrance, including perfumes, colognes, candles, body , dryer sheets, lotions, air fresheners, etc.
All of these tips will not only keep baby, but you and your entire family healthier!
I hope this post on how to detox your baby’s nursery helps you feel more at ease and keep your baby healthy!