Plastic toys are very common today for babies and kids and they spend most of their time with these toys, mostly also exploring them with their mouth by licking, chewing them etc. It is necessary to ensure that materials used for making those toys must not contain any toxic elements that can raise health issues in children. It has been found by researchers that during the manufacturing process different chemicals are added to plastic toys to make them flexible which could be harmful to kids, particularly babies who are most concerned.
Unfortunately, many parents do not know about the toxic effects of certain plastic toys, so it is essential to make them aware of plastic free toys that are both eco-friendly and safe for the kids. Parents should avoid giving plastic toys to their kids as the safety of the child matters the most.
In fact, a 2021 study by the Denmark Technical University (DTU) commissioned by the UN Environment Program showed that more than 100 chemicals found in plastic toys materials can pose health risks to children. These are chemical additives like placizisers, used in toys to make them softer and provide elasticity. Further to plasticizers, also flame retardants and fragrances were found among the hazardous substances. The researchers recommended stricter international regulations, so that safer alternatives are found to these harmful chemicals.
It has long been known that several chemicals used in plastic toys in different parts of the world can be harmful to human health. However, it is difficult for parents to figure out how to avoid plastic toys containing chemicals that may cause possible health risks to their children. Instead, they should go for buying toys made with materials that are an excellent alternative to plastic. Here are some examples:
These are no plastic toys that give babies and toddlers the same enjoyment and avoid any health issues arising from the harmful effects of plasticizers.
Different materials can be a good alternative to plastic for making toys for babies and children which do not contain harmful plastic components. Most of these materials are obtained from natural sources and do not include any chemical components or harmful additives. Moreover, unlike plastic, these materials are biodegradable and do not contribute to environmental pollution after disposal. Some of the most popular eco-friendly alternatives to plastic toys are discussed as follows:
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Wooden toys are a very old and traditional form of toy making that has become more popular nowadays due to their environment-friendly nature and natural ingredients. The various advantages of wooden toys over plastic toys are mentioned below.
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Cloth toys are also a traditional art form of toy making. They can be designed with attractive colors that can catch the child’s attention. The advantages of cloth toys are as follows:
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Bamboo is a plant with a woody stem that is used for making different art crafts including toys. Unprocessed bamboo is a sustainable material because it is a fast-growing grass, it doesn’t require fertilizers or pesticides, and self-regenerates from its own roots, so it doesn’t need to be replanted, nor does it need a lot of water to grow, making it a renewable and versatile crop.
Bamboo toys have a range of benefits in health aspects and safety for kids, some of which are mentioned as follows:
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Food-grade silicone is obtained from natural silica and is used to make baby food containers, tethers, and toys which are safe for babies. It is soft and flexible but also can sustain chewing or biting strain for a long time. The benefits of food-grade silicone over plastic in making baby toys are mentioned below.
To some people plastic-free toys are toys that do not include silicone either. This is because silicone is not completely inert and some low-grade silicone products are made with plasticizers.
Rubber Toys are not only great fun for small children but they’re eco-friendly too. The natural, biodegradable rubber toy is completely safe for your children so they can chew, stretch and play without facing any health issues. Natural rubber is sourced from the latex of rubber trees which is vulcanized and shaped into various products. Natural rubber is another sustainable and flexible material that many manufacturers prefer to prepare baby and toddlers’ teething toys. The advantages of natural rubber toys are mentioned as follows:
In the modern lifestyle, we are surrounded by plastic everywhere, so it’s not easy to find plastic-free toys. We all are aware of the harmful effects of plastic on the environment and parents are concerned about their kid’s safety and health aspects while playing with plastic toys. Researchers are working on alternative natural resources to replace plastic as much as possible. One area that can make use of plastic-free alternatives is the toy-making sector by making hygienic and eco-friendly toys for babies and children. By choosing plastic-free, biodegradable, natural alternatives over plastic, we can make our environment cleaner and safer for our future generations.
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