The last thing you would expect to be harmful, are products marketed for baby use. Naturally these must be ultra safe as nobody wants to create a product that runs the risk of harming a baby.
But it turns out that baby wipes, one of the most common baby products that parents use, may have very negative effects on children as emerging research is suggesting. A 2014 American Academy of Pediatrics study involved researchers led by associate clinical professor of dermatology and pediatrician Mary Wu Chang of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine in Farmington. They revealed that the common preservative which is found in baby wet wipes, may in fact cause allergic reactions. The particular wipes with the red flag are ones made by the Kimberly-Clark Corp.
It’s called methylisothiazolinone (MI). This is nothing new either as this has been used with other preservatives, but now it is being used more and more on it’s own. While they are still conducting research, so far it’s looking as if this altered formation is indeed thought to be responsible for a surge of allergic reactions.
The symptoms that the kids in the study experienced were all similar. They included the following: swelling, rashes, blistering, cracking, disfiguring patches on their faces, hands, and buttocks, or wherever the wipes were exposed to. Turns out these are common symptoms of ACD or allergic contact dermatitis, this according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.
They made sure that the reactions were coming from the MI by doing patch testing. Then, when they stopped using the wipes, the symptoms would go away.
Here’s the statement that a Kimberly-Clark spokesman, Bob Brand, issued in regards to the alarming study:
“While our wipe products remain safe for use, we recognize that recent studies have raised concerns about the use of MI as a preservative ingredient. We have been evaluating alternative preservative options over the past few years, and are now ready to confirm that, beginning this month, Kimberly-Clark will start introducing new wet wipes that are MI-free across its entire product range in the U.S., Canada, Europe and other global markets.”
However, it turns out MI may not be the sole allergen in the wipes. Many of the other ingredients could trigger allergic reactions as well.
Dr. Carla Davis is the director of the food allergy program at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston and she said the following in regards to the study:
“We’re talking about a very small proportion of people who will have a problem with MI, so, really, parents should be comfortable using wipes until or unless their child develops a rash that doesn’t resolve in the regular manner. But if that happens and the rash is persistent, then the wipes could be a problem and testing should be pursued by a dermatologist.”
Be sure to share this news with friends and family as word should get out that these wipes could indeed cause adverse reactions to children.