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Toxins in Huggies and Pampers Aren't What You Want to Put near Baby's Skin

For Related Articles and More Information, Please Visit OCA's Health Issues Page and our Coming Clean Campaign Page.

When parents pull a box of diapers off the shelf, how many of them are aware of the risks to which they are exposing their children: cancer, asthma, hormone disruption, and others. Dioxins, sodium polycrylate, dyes, fragrances, and phthalates are some of the ingredients credible scientific researchers have found in disposable diaper brands including Huggies and Pampers used by millions of parents. It's even been discovered that the dyes used to put decorations on diapers are known to cause diaper rash. Fortunately, there are much healthier alternatives.

Dioxins are a class of potent carcinogens (cancer causers) that are not made on purpose but are created as a byproduct of industrial processes like chlorine bleaching of paper pulp and some natural processes like volcano eruptions. The name dioxins refers to hundreds of chemicals, out of which about 30 are the most toxic. The most toxic, TCDD, was the contaminant in the infamous Agent Orange that made it so deadly. They are considered persistent pollutants because, once created, they hang around for a long time without breaking down and they stay in the human body for a long time, too.

Phthalates, on the other hand, are classed as endocrine disruptors. This means that they mimic human hormones and send false signals to the body.

A 1999 study tested emissions from three brands of diapers on mice and concluded, "some types of disposable diapers emit mixtures of chemicals that are toxic to the respiratory tract. Disposable diapers should be considered as one of the factors that might cause or exacerbate asthmatic conditions."