Study Finds Elevated Chemical Levels in Day Care Centers
A survey of forty daycare centers in Northern California shows that 35 of them have elevated levels of formaldehyde, and of chemicals from cleaning supplies. That's a concern because these chemicals impact children more than adults. Children's bodies aren't as good as adults' at getting rid of toxins, and since they're still growing, they're in danger of being knocked off course in their development.
The levels of chemicals in the daycare centers wouldn't have immediate effects, but could aggravate asthma and increase health risks.
"I don't want people to panic about these results," said Asa Bradman of the Center for Environmental Research and Childrens' Health at UC Berkeley, who conducted the study. "But we need to understand that there's a lot of exposures that are happening. There's a lot of health problems in children that are increasing, and these environmental factors may play a role in that."
The amount of chemicals Bradman found in daycares is similar to the amount in homes. To reduce them, Bradman says people can use cleaning products without fragrances, and buy furniture that meets California's formaldehyde standards.
The study was sponsored by the state Air Resources Board.