Atypical Childhood Social Behavior And Phthalates, Bpa

911 words - 4 pages

The Article describes how endocrine disruptors can produce childhood social impairment and more specifically the effects of bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates exposure during pregnancy produces autistic-like social behaviors in children. The specific social behaviors that occur from phthalates and BPA exposure are difficult interpersonal and social awareness skills. Phthalates and BPA, the independent variable, are endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs). The EDCs interfere with the body’s hormones which are critical to brain development (Braun, 2011). Changes to hormone levels during pregnancy can lead to brain change that can alter childhood behavior. BPA and phthalates are consumer products used in plastics, food can linings, food packaging, cosmetics, personal care products and vinyl plastics. Other studies have found that animals exposed to BPA and phthalates before birth have altered behavior; also, collaborating research shows that same effect in humans (Miodovnik, 2011). Additional studies also show a connection between these chemicals and hormonal signaling.
According to this article 137 mothers and their children were observed over a span of nine years by Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City (Braun, 2011). These mothers came from varying ethnic backgrounds and came from a lower income area of New York City. These women also were of lower education although a majority of them increased their education levels by the end of this study. The ages of the women were fairly evenly distributed from 20- 30 years of age for the majority of the participants (Miodovnik, 2011). This sampling of woman is representative of their target population because of the varying ages and ethnicities that were used and also those they pooled them all from similar sociodemographic groups. Samples of urine were taken from these women during their third trimester of pregnancy and tested these urine samples for EDC’s including phthalates and BPA. When the children were between the ages of seven and nine a urine sample was again taken and analyzed to see if the levels of EDC’s had changed, which they did not, and the mothers participated in a standardized test, the dependent variable. The standardized test given to the women was the social responsiveness scale (SRS) (Miodovnik, 2011). This test is the gold standard for the industry for identifying indicators of autism spectrum disorders and was used to produce statistical analysis. The children who were born from mothers having higher concentrations of EDC’s were associated with more atypical social behaviors. Particularly the phthalates found in fragrances and personal care products were most strongly associated with atypical social behaviors. ...

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