Skin Care Ingredients to Avoid

Most moms use skin screens, moisturizers and other skin care products on themselves and on their kids. However is any of the ingredients actually harmful to your kid? Here is a look at some of the things we find in skin care products that you might want to avoid.

Artificial fragrances: Quite often, these chemically produced artificial fragrances will be listed on the label as nothing more than ‘a fragrance'. Unfortunately, chemicals like these are often irritating, especially if you have sensitive skin. If your skin is sensitive and you suffer headaches, dizziness or rashes after using a particular skin product, the chances are pretty good that the culprit is an artificial fragrance. You should therefore stop using it immediately.

Artificial colors: Avoid any products that suggest they contain artificial colors for exactly the same reason that you would avoid artificial fragrances. These cause cancer!

In the UK and Australia, artificial colors are usually described as ‘E numbers' whereas in the USA, they will have an FD & C code number together with a description of the color. Some food colorings are known to be potentially harmful, in some cases possibly carcinogenic, so any skin care product containing them should definitely avoided.

Diazolindinyl Urea: This is a preservative chemicals that is sometimes used in make up and skincare products. This chemical is known to be toxic and can cause contact dermatitis and other skin problems, so it is one that should be avoided.

Methyl Paraben and Propyl Paraben are two chemicals that are used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of skincare products and make up. Once again, there is some evidence that these two chemicals are toxic and that they might be a cause of allergic reactions as well as breast and other forms of cancer.

Somewhat ironically, there is also evidence that a combination of parabens and sunlight accelerates skin ageing as well.

Propylene Glycol: Propylene glycol is a synthetic organic glycerin that is used in many different ways including in skincare products (as a moisturizer) and make-up.

This petroleum-based plastic is such a powerful solvent that it can eat through a steel tank in 48 hours, which is why it has to be stored in plastic drums. In the USA, the EPA considers propylene glycol to be so toxic that it insists on workers wearing protective clothing, goggles and gloves, yet it is used in some products in strengths of up to 20%.

Given these facts, it is perhaps not surprising that this is a chemical that is known to cause severe allergic reactions in some people.

In my next blog entry I will give you some more advice as to what chemicals to avoid in skin care lotions and sunscreens! After all we have to keep our families safe!

Infertility is Not Always the Woman’s Fault

Infertility is a problem that affects millions of couples all over the world every year as they vainly struggle to create the baby for whom they are so desperate. Infertility is also a problem that can affect both partners as it is not something that is restricted to one gender or the other either.
Indeed, it's a total myth that infertility or the inability of a couple to have a baby is always a ‘woman's problem' as studies indicate that at least half of all situations where a couple have been trying for a baby and failed are in some way connected to male reproductive problems.
A further complication for couples who are trying to have a baby without success is that it is often difficult to understand why they should be failing to achieve their dreams. It is not always completely straightforward to establish that one or the other partner has a genuine infertility problem without seeking medical attention, and given that there is perhaps a degree of embarrassment attached to doing so, this does not always happen.
On the other hand, as you will discover later, the number of couples who do seek medical attention for fertility problems that then conceive almost immediately is surprising high. Being embarrassed is clearly not the only possible reaction to having to seek medical attention for infertility!
In fact, according to the US statistics, approximately one third of infertility problems are caused by female difficulties, whilst another one third can be ‘blamed' on the man.
Nevertheless, even though men and women are about equally responsible for infertility problems, it is estimated that approximately 10% of women in the USA (just over 6 million people) do have fertility problems according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) section of the US Department of Health and Human Services.
The percentages of infertility problems that can be ascribed to one partner or the other vary from one country to country too. For example, in the UK, 25% of the problems are caused by male difficulties, 50% are caused by female difficulties with 25% having no known cause. And unlike the US figures, the percentage of infertile couples who both suffered difficulties is only 10% in Sweden, so statistics do vary from country to country.
However, on a worldwide basis, it is believed that around one in every seven couples has difficulties conceiving with data from most countries indicating that irrespective of development levels and the standard of living, the ratio seems to hold fairly stable.
In approximately 20% of cases where infertility is a problem, both the male and female have reproductive system difficulties whilst in the final 10% of apparent infertility situations, there is no cause that can be found. Age increases the possibility of infertility as well, so this is another factor that needs to be taken into account.
So there goes that myth!