1. Parenting
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

What is BPA?

By

Question: What is BPA?
Of late, there have been some serious concerns about the safety of children's toys. We've heard of dangerous chemicals like BPA and phthalates being present in toys, baby bottles and other kids' products. A commonly asked question I come across is "What is BPA?". Here's what BPA is all about.
Answer: BPA stands for Bisphenol-A. It is an organic compound mainly used as a building block in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resin materials. Polycarbonate plastic is commonly found in food storage containers, baby bottles, water bottles, toys, compact discs, dental tooth fillers and medical devices. Epoxy Resin is commonly found in the lining of food cans and bottle tops.

There has been a lot of hue and cry about the fact that BPA and epoxy resin are present in children's products like baby bottles and plastic toys. BPA happens to be the main component of polycarbonate, from which certain plastic toys like rattles and teethers are made of.

Most of the BPA enters our body via our diet. It's also a concern for babies since babies tend to mouth their toys and this could possibly be a route by which BPA enters our body. BPA also happens to be unstable, especially when exposed to heat, acidic or basic conditions. This means that more BPA could leach out of plastics when it comes in contact with bleach, harsh detergents or heat, a common encounterance in dish washers and microwaves.

BPA is a dangerous chemical which can cause a lot of harm to our health in the long term.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.