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Prenatal Care: Pregnancy and Exposure to Conventional Pesticides

Toxins in conventional pesticides are harmful for adults, children, and pets, but especially for expectant mothers.

More research is being conducted on the correlation between disease and birth defects in children and their prenatal exposure to household conventional pesticides. Environmental Health Perspectives, a peer-reviewed journal published by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, found an increased risk of brain tumors and leukemia in children whose mothers had used indoor spray conventional pesticides such as common flea and tick control products and roach sprays. Not only were the highest rates of incidence found in children exposed to toxins during prenatal pregnancy,

but also more frequent exposure was found to increase these risks. These study results demonstrate the high probability that common household conventional pesticides are directly linked to preventable birth defects and disease brought on by exposure to carcinogens during prenatal pregnancy. Chemicals in conventional pesticides have different functions. Some repel pests and others prevent them from reproducing, both without lethally affecting them. But most household sprays are designed to kill critters on contact. And they do so by interfering with the biological systems of pests—namely the central nervous system. Nerve fibers carry impulses throughout an organism and those impulses are passed between gaps in the fibers. Traditional insecticides can target the fibers, the gaps between the fibers, or both.

Incidentally, it is during the first trimester that a baby’s nervous system is developed. During the first trimester the brain, spinal cord, and neural tissue of the central nervous system are formed. So are the baby’s organs and facial features including ears, lips, eyes, nose, and even teeth in addition to fingers, toes, arms, and legs. It doesn’t then seem coincidental that the California Birth Defects Monitoring Program found moderate risk increase for prenatal pregnant women exposed to conventional pesticides included oral clefts and neural tube, heart, and limb defects. These risk increases are linked explicitly to defects in development during the first trimester.

But describing these risks as moderate cannot be devalued. Don’t panic! Studies suggest increased—not imminent—risk of incidence. And heightened risk comes from prolonged and substantial exposure to conventional pesticides. If you have recently used a traditional flea and tick control product on your pet or have a service company spraying your home quarterly for pests, rest assured that your baby is not doomed to disease or defect.

However, as the old adage goes: knowledge is power. And understanding the risks gives women the power to make informed decisions and to take an active role in the ongoing health and development of their families. Here at Wondercide we believe in providing only products that will promote the safety and health of families and the environment which sustains them. We provide safe alternatives.

For indoor pest control, our solution is BioDefense,a safe spray that’s non-toxic to humans and animals, the environment, and is even safe to be used in food preparation areas as it’s made of human food-grade ingredients. And for a safe alternative to pet treatment, we suggestEvolv flea and tick control, which kills fleas and ticks on contact with no toxic effect to cats, dogs, children, and of course, expectant mothers.

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