Health

Baby Wipes May Be Harmful To Some Children

| by Jordan Smith

Some doctors are advising parents to reconsider how often they use baby wipes on their children.

A 2014 study published in the medical journal Pediatrics detailed the cases of six children who had allergic reactions to baby wipes.

The study suggested that the lack of awareness of the problem could be because rashes and blisters are often wrongly attributed to other conditions, according to NBC News.

“I think it may be more common than people realize,” said Dr. Mary Wu Chang, one of the study's co-authors.

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Chang suggested the reaction is related to the presence of the chemical methylisothiazolinone in baby wipes.

One 8-year-old girl had rashes when she came to see Chang. She tested the girl for an allergy to methylisothiazolinone and the result came back positive.

“What made me think of the wipes was that the rash was on her face and on her buttocks,” Chang added. “So I asked the mother what she was using to clean her.”

It turned out the mother was using wipes. When she stopped doing so, the rashes cleared up quickly.

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Over the following 18 months, Chang encountered other children with similar symptoms.

She explained that the cause of this may be a decision by manufacturers to increase the amount of methylisothiazolinone in their products by 25 times.

Chang doesn't advise parents to stop using baby wipes.

“They’re so convenient,” said Chang. “I have three kids, so I know how hard it is to do the changes, especially when you’re traveling. But maybe when you’re at home, it would be better to use a gentle cleanser and water. That way you minimize exposure.”

These concerns have been intensified recently by allegations that certain brands of wet wipes could be even more harmful.

Hayley Neale from Birmingham, England, posted photos online in September of her daughter’s face after using a brand of wet wipes from supermarket chain Aldi, named Mamia Newborn.

Some parents reported their children developing blisters that bled or injuries that looked like sunburn.

“The exact same thing happened with my son when we tried the Mamia newborn wipes. I don’t use any wipes from there now. Luckily I’d only bought one pack so they went straight in the bin! I used them to wipe my son’s face and he ended up with red blotches. I washed it with water straight away so the redness went away after about half an hour,” wrote Maddy Salter, according to the Birmingham Mail.

Sources: NBC News, Birmingham Mail / Photo credit: Health Eternally

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