Chemicals blame for "stupid" children?

Even small doses damage brain development and motor skills

Dumb by chemicals? WWF
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A WWF study has summarized new scientific research that shows that synthetic chemicals interfere with children's intelligence. The findings reveal that these chemicals can damage the brain development and motor function of children, even in concentrations that have already been detected in human blood.

For example, observed effects of chemicals on children's brain development worldwide are less memory, decreased visual cognition, less developed mobility, and lower intelligence quotients. In addition, the number of disorders such as attention deficit syndrome (ADD) and autism is on the rise, and chemicals are becoming more and more suspected of playing a role. A panel of scientists from the US has estimated that 10 percent of all neurological behavioral disorders are wholly or partially caused by chemicals.

Chemicals with neurotoxic effects include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which are now banned in many countries, and the much-used brominated flame retardants found in videos, televisions, computers, upholstery, car seats and furniture. The study also shows that 70 percent of the most widely used chemicals have not been tested or have been insufficiently tested for their effects on the brain and nervous system. They therefore carry an unknown risk for the development of the child.

"Even in cases where there are alternatives, the prevailing legislation has so far failed to withdraw hazardous chemicals. When it comes to the intellectual development of future generations, we have to take the warning signals seriously and act as a precautionary measure, "says Dr. Ninja Reineke, chemical expert of the WWF. "One-eyed is the discussion about the EU chemicals policy, which is argued only with the costs of the chemical industry. Is that the way to intelligent innovation? "

The development of the human brain and nervous system are extremely sensitive, as they extend over a long period of time, from the embryonic stage to puberty. Studies have shown that even in European industrialized countries children's brain development has been affected by substances that have accumulated in their mother and have been transmitted to the fetus during pregnancy. display

(WWF, 09.06.2004 - NPO)