Of great interest is a report released recently (June, 2013) by the Environmental Defence in Canada called “Pre-Polluted – a report on toxic substances in the umbilical cord blood of Canada newborns”. The report brings awareness of how our most vulnerable – our unborn children – are being affected before they are even born. Sadly, this information has been known for many years but it is good to have scientific confirmation in the hopes that regulations and laws will be implemented to slow down the manufacture and ban the use of many environmental toxins, mostly man-made which are a major cause of cancers and other diseases. As one person stated “this is not just a Canadian but a global concern”.
Toxins in Unborn Babies
Some of the thought-provoking information from the report:
- Toxins in babies ranged from 55 to 121
- 132 of the 137 chemicals found may cause cancer or cause developmental problems in children
- Some of the common toxins were PCB’s, PFC’s and organochlorine pesticides
The main way in which unborn babies accumulate these chemicals is from his mother so often it follows that whatever affects the mother affects the unborn child.
Other risks to unborn babies
- Radiation exposure risks (prenatal radiation exposure) especially in early stages of development
- Secondhand smoke can increase the risk of a stillborn baby
- Royal College of Paedeatrics Hospital Report states antibiotics do not affect the unborn child but given to a child in the first year of life they may develop eczema
- The effect on the unborn child from over the counter drugs is not fully known at this time but “drug exposure in utero may produce deleterious effects in the fetus but not the mother”
- The effects of Alcohol and the unborn child are well-known with damages of Fetal Alcohol syndrome mainly to the brain
- Smoking during pregnancy is highly dangerous to your unborn child. Severe risks to the fetus when mothers smoke during pregnancy include miscarriage, premature birth, low birth weight and SIDS, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, after birth
Why is it so dangerous to smoke during pregnancy?
Cigarette smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals, including truly nasty things
like cyanide, lead, and at least 60 cancer-causing compounds.
When you smoke during pregnancy, that toxic brew gets into your bloodstream,
your baby’s only source of oxygen and nutrients.
Quote from Baby Centre
It is impossible to avoid toxic chemicals today as they are in every aspect of our daily lives, and the health impacts on our children will be ongoing with the continued use of chemicals in their lives starting before they are born. Pregnancy for an expectant mother is a short-term commitment in her life and well worth the benefits of looking after herself, to the best of her ability, for the lifelong health benefits of her unborn child. Unfortunately it seems that it is a natural progression for many newborns entering the world today that the odds are stacked against him or her for health complications later in life
The report group of babies was small but hopefully this will lead to more in-depth and wider trials