The pads, sheets, blankets, and comforters you choose can surprisingly impact the health of both mother and baby. Bedding products not made entirely of 100% Certified Organic Cotton or Wool typically contain the hidden harms of petroleum based chemicals, formaldehyde, and heavy metals including nickel and lead.

Considering a mother spends at least 1/3 of her day in bed and a baby spends 2/3 of the day sleeping, it is important to limit the direct exposure to chemicals in every way possible. Guidelines when selecting bedding products include:

Avoid Synthetic Materials
Avoid synthetic materials for sheets such as polyester or poly/cotton blends. Synthetic fibers are made of petro-chemicals that contain volatile organic compounds (VOC’s). Additionally, all poly/cotton blends as well as many non-organic 100% cotton sheets contain a formaldehyde finish to make them permanently pressed. VOC and formaldehyde exposure can lead to many symptoms including headaches, coughing, watery eyes, respiratory problems including asthma, and more serious conditions such as cancer. The risk is greater for infants and young children because children’s skin is more permeable and their lungs are still developing.

Choose 100% Certified Organic Cotton, Chemical Free Bedding
Non-organic cotton, in all likelihood, is exposed to pesticides which can lead to negative health effects such as birth defects and other long-term health problems. Because cotton used in textiles is not grown for food, the pesticides used in cotton are not regulated like they are for food. 100% Certified Organic Cotton is much more durable than chemically treated cotton because of all the processing the treated cotton has gone through. Because of this, organic cotton textiles tend to last 5 times longer than similar non-organic products. Heavy metals and contaminants including nickel and lead are also absent from fully organic bed sheets. Eliminating the exposure to nickel and lead can prevent possible risks to the immune system, respiratory tract, and endocrine regulation. These heavy metals have also been known to cause development and behavioral problems.

Choose Organic Wool
Another excellent option for adult and child bedding is organic wool. Rest assured you will not find the scratchy feeling of non organic wool if the wool you choose is organic. Wool is a good option for blankets and comforter because of wool’s natural fire resistant and absorbency qualities. Wool is also naturally resistant to dust mites and odors and is naturally water resistant. Be careful as some washable wool can be dangerous as the chlorine bleaching process can produce dioxins unhealthy to mother and baby.

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