Why Did DOP Get Replaced
The problem with phthalates is that they leach out of plastics into food, water, and the environment, and there is mounting evidence suggesting that phthalate exposure can lead to a variety of health problems.
Phthalates are used in a wide variety of products, but their most widespread use is as plasticizers for PVC, one of the most common types of plastic. After polypropylene and polyethylene, PVC is the third most common plastic polymer and is used to make products such as building materials, furniture, clothing, garden hoses, food packaging, blood-storage containers, and medical devices.
The research into phthalate alternatives was prompted by growing concerns about the potential health risks posed by phthalates. Certain phthalates are considered endocrine disruptors because they or their metabolites interfere with the body's hormone system. Most of the studies showing harmful effects have been done in lab animals, but some human studies have also found associations between exposure to phthalates and adverse reproductive and developmental effects.
How phthalates affect human health and at what levels of exposure are still unresolved questions, but researchers are particularly concerned about potential effects on infants and children. Bans on the use of phthalates in children's toys and childcare products have been imposed by both the European Union and the United States.
Nevertheless, the use of phthalates in other products remains widespread. They are found in vinyl siding and flooring, shower curtains, children's rain gear, and even in personal care products such as shampoos and cosmetics. As a result, phthalates are now widely dispersed throughout the environment, and most people have detectable amounts in their blood.
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