Today we move away from BPA and on to PVC or Polyvinyl chloride with the help of HazelNut Kids PVC is the third most widely produced plastic because it is cheap, durable, and easy to assemble. It can be made softer and more flexible with the addition of phthalates. Lucky for us phthalates were recently banned by the Consumer Product Saftey Commission, but PVC also contains other heavy metals like lead, which is highly toxic.
PVC is very common in baby bibs, teethers, nap mats, and of course toys! Recent studies show that 40% of toys are made out of this plastic. Think of that rubber ducky. That’s not rubber. It’s PVC. And where does that ducky usually end up? In a child’s mouth, like most toys.
Also like BPA, PVC are endocrine disruptors, and can upset normal hormonal balance in our bodies, stimulate the growth and development of cancers (breast, uterine, prostate), impair fertility, and disrupt pregnancy. Lead causes damage to the nervous system, leading to decreased learning ability and behavioral deficits. Children are especially susceptible because they absorb and retain lead more easily than adults and also because their brains are still developing.
How can we avoid items containing PVC?
– Get rid of all your older plastic toys which are likely to contain the highest level of toxic chemicals
– Buy from major brands and well known stores. Avoid cheap plastic toys from bargain retailers because they are probably imported from China where there is no control over chemicals used.
– Best of all ~ buy wooden toys!
Wooden toys last longer than plastic toys do and you can feel good about buying natural products that are not potentially full of lead and other toxins.
What could be better than a toy designed to promote ecological responsibility and providing learning and fun for your child? Wooden toys fit the bill in all these areas. And it’s gotten easier to find toys made this way, thanks for great companies like HazelNuts Kids!
I was super excited when I got sent a wooden bamboo game called Kombino that is made by the great company Hape. It’s a game for the whole family – ages four on up – so we all sat down to play. Right away we realized that it is very familiar to Sudoku! And we love Sukoku! My impatient six year old got frustrated pretty fast but my eight year old would not stop playing. It was wonderful watching his brain work trying to fit all the pieces together.