In a modern world where everything is plastic, one often forgets about the health issue of plastic baby bottles. Parents and grandparents grew up with these potentially fatal bottles, never knowing that there could be a problem with them. The idea that these bottles might cause their baby irreparable damage never crosses their mind. This is because the plastic baby bottle is simply so familiar and so readily available that the concept that it might cause harm is simply over looked.
Most plastic baby bottles are made of polyprophaline, typically known as simply polypro. This chemical is an oil-based plastic that is largely harmless for short periods of exposure. These bottles can be easily cleaned and are typically sanitary due to the high temperatures of manufacturing and the relatively small pores in the plastic. While this is good and safe for the child who is using the plastic bottle, the health issue of the plastic baby bottle comes in when the bottle is used for an extended time or is held from one baby to the next.
While polypro is generally a study and stable plastic, over time the plastic does decompose. While the decomposition of plastic is not as extreme as paper or food, the process does occur. During this decomposition phase, the plastic begins to lose valuable molecules that it needs to maintain stability. The more the molecules are lost, the more unstable the plastic becomes and the more potentially harmful molecules are released into the air and fluid in the plastic bottle. This then exposes the child to these molecules through the air that he or she breathes or the drink that he or she is exposed to in the bottle.
To prevent the decomposition of the plastic in a manner that could cause a health issue of plastic baby bottles, one should limit the amount of time that the child gets to use a single bottle. One should also consider getting rid of the bottles between children and buying all new each time. This helps to limit the amount of molecules that a younger child in the family is exposed to. Other ideas include seasoning the baby bottles with oil or other sealant. This would help to prevent the premature breakdown of the plastic. A final idea would be to wash the bottles only in cold water because the bottles are known to be the most stable in luke-warm waters, expand in hot water, and remain less porous in cold waters.
The only true way to know that one is not exposing his or her children to the chemicals in polypro is to do away with the plastic baby bottles. The health issue of plastic baby bottles range from mild learning setbacks to severe respiratory and nervous system failure. These potentially harmful chemicals can be avoided by switching to glass baby bottles. These bottles are covenant in that they are easier to clean, however, they are easier to break while trying to clean them. Glass bottles also tend to be heavier than plastic bottles, which can lead to people not wanting to carry them.