A chemical that is often found in common household products such as toothpaste and handwash has been linked to problems in unborn babies. Called Triclosan, it is a powerful anti-bacterial agent that is used in low concentration in many items.
Scientists are concerned that high levels of the chemical can affect the amount of blood flowing baby through the placenta and reduce the amount of oxygen getting to the baby. This could lead to problems in brain development.
“We know it’s a problem” said Professor Margaret James of the University of Florida, in the Daily Mail. “But we just don’t know how much of a problem.”
But it’s not something to get very worried about if you are pregnant. More tests are being called for and mums-to-be have been advised to check packaging for the substance in products like toothpaste and handwash in order to minimise their contact.
It’s important to remember that scientists are concerned about exposure to high amounts of the chemical whereas the UK maximum for tricolsan is just 0.3% in any product, so there is no immediate cause for alarm.
For peace of mind, why not switch to organic or natural blends such as these chemical-free treats for your skin.