New York: Would-be-mothers please take note! Using personal care products such as soaps and lotions during pregnancy may lead to adverse reproductive effects in your newborns, warns a new study. The findings revealed a link between women who use cosmetics with higher levels of butyl paraben — commonly used preservative in cosmetics — to shorter gestational age at birth, decreased birth weight and increased odds of preterm birth.
“The antimicrobial compound — triclocarban — mainly added to soaps, is associated with shorter gestational age at birth. Another common chemical added to lotions and creams — propyl paraben — is associated with decreased body length at birth,” said Laura Geer from SUNY Downstate Medical Centre in New York, US. “Our latest study adds to the growing body of evidence showing that endocrine-disrupting compounds can lead to developmental and reproductive problems in animals and in humans,” Geer added in a paper published in the Journal of Hazardous Materials.
“Based on this new evidence, the safety of use of these chemicals in our consumer products should be reassessed,” Geer pointed out. “While small-scale changes in birth size may not be of clinical relevance or cause for concern in individual cases, subtle shifts in birth size or timing at the population-level would have major impacts on the risk for adverse birth outcomes,” Geer noted.