There are so many products in our bathrooms that have the potential to contain harmful toxins. Any items like toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, and lotions that go onto our skin or into our mouths will be absorbed into our bodies. It’s important to ask yourself if you’re comfortable with all of the ingredients found in those products getting absorbed into your child’s body.
Before you can begin replacing these dangerous items, you need to be able to identify them.
Here are 7 Common Toxins Found in the Bathroom.
- Talc: Talc, commonly found in baby powder, puts our children at risk at an early age. Many people still use baby powder to treat their child’s diaper area if it’s too moist. Exposure to talc can lead to ovarian cancer and respiratory issues. If your child is breathing in toxic particles like talc, which is often contaminated with asbestos, that’s problematic.
If you’re tied to using a powder to maintain freshness and dryness, you can try corn starch which will have the same effect as talc but isn’t toxic at all. Try this Organic non-GMO cornstarch powder in this applicator lid that you can put on a mason jar for ease of use.
- Petroleum or Mineral Oil: These products, like Vaseline, come from petroleum or underground gas. It can cause hormone disruptions and it clogs your pores. This means not only is the product itself toxic but it prevents your body from detoxifying.
There are non-petroleum jelly products available, but you can also use olive oil or coconut oil on your skin or your child’s skin and have the same effects without the toxicity.
- Parabens: This toxic ingredient is found in shampoo, lotions, gels, soaps, and creams. It comes in a variety of forms so it’s important you check the label for any big words containing the term paraben.
Many companies have recognized the danger of parabens and have specifically labeled their products paraben-free. One of my favorite paraben-free products is Castile Soap. It can be used for your body and for house cleaning. It’s very concentrated so a little bottle lasts a long time. Castile Soap is hemp based and scented versions are naturally scented with essential oils.
- Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS): SLS is a foaming agent found in soap and toothpaste. Since we absorb more through our mouths than our skin, when SLS is used in toothpaste it’s especially dangerous.
You can try Coral brand toothpaste. It has a mild berry flavor and it’s SLS free.
- Triclosan: This is an antibacterial agent used in hand soaps. It’s been banned in the U.S., but you’ll still find it in products occasionally.
The efficacy of hand washing comes from the friction not the ingredients in the soap. So instead of relying on harmful chemicals to remove the germs from your child’s hands, teach them to scrub well. One we use at our house is the Everyone brand.
- Phthalates: This product is used as a plasticizer. It’s commonly found in nail polish and hair spray. Phthalates are a hormone disruptor which is especially dangerous for our kids. It’s safest to just avoid these products all together.
- Fragrance: The problem with the term fragrance when listed as an ingredient is that it’s non-specific. You have to wonder what makes up the fragrance and why the company is avoiding listing the specifics.
Even when the components of the fragrance are listed often the ingredients contain words that are too complex to read. That’s a good indicator that the product is toxic and should be avoided.
If you’re looking to add fragrance to a product it’s best to use diluted pure essential oils.
There are many more possible toxins, but these are the top offenders. It can be overwhelming, and expensive, to try to replace everything toxic in your bathroom at once. Instead, as you run out of products, see if you can find non-toxic alternatives.
Be gentle with yourself. You’re doing a great job.
I hope this information has been helpful to you as part of creating Your Autism Game Plan.
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