A new study has found that the use of chemicals as flame retardants and plasticizers used in electronics, car seats and other baby products cause a larger risk to a child's brain development. The researchers expressed that using low levels of chemicals called organophosphate also cause harm to IQ, attention and memory in children, according to ANI. The findings of the study have been published in the journal 'Environmental Health Perspectives'.
For the study, the researchers analysed dozens of human, animal and cell-based studies. The researchers stated the 'neurotoxicity' of chemicals used as flame retardants and plasticizers were considered to have less impact. However, during the analysis, the researchers found that these chemicals are also neurotoxic, but in different ways, according to ANI.
As per the researchers, people have started using flame retardants and plasticizers instead of banned halogenated flame retardants in electronics, car seats and other baby products. Heather Patisaul, lead author and neuroendocrinologist at North Carolina State University, has stated that people use organophosphate in TV, car seats assuming it to be safe.
Patisaul added, "Unfortunately, these chemicals appear to be just as harmful as the chemicals they are intended to replace but act by a different mechanism," according to ANI.
According to the study, organophosphate esters present in the product mix into the air and dust. The dust that has been affected by organophosphate gets transferred to everything that people eat. The researchers have informed that children get affected by the dust.
The researchers have urged people to stop the unnecessary usage of all organophosphate esters, including flame retardants that they use in vehicles, products and building materials.
Linda Birnbaum, co-author and retired NIEHS Director Linda Birnbaum said, "Organophosphate eaters threaten the brain development of whole generation", according to ANI.
Birnbaum added, "If we don't stem their use now, the consequences will be grave and irreversible". The authors have advised that governments and industries must conduct alternative assessments and spend their money to find solutions without harmful chemicals.
Carol Kwiatowski, co-author and Science and Policy Senior Associate at the Green Science Policy Institue stated that the organophosphate esters cause serious risk, especially to children. Kwiatkowski advised the product makers to analyse the use of organophosphate ester flame retardants and plasticizers.