A recent report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that chemicals found in children’s dummies, baby bottle teats, elastic bands, rubber soles for shows, swimming caps and goggles, tyres, gloves and even condoms could be responsible for cancer. The WHO concluded that a material used in rubber manufacturing – MBT probably causes cancer. This is largely due to it raising the risk of cancer when tested on animals.
Following a health meeting in Lyon, France, it was concluded by the 24 experts who are from 8 different countries that there was enough evidence to add MBT to its encyclopaedia of carcinogens. This puts MBT one level below cigarettes and asbestos.
Although MBT has been included in this list, it is still not proven whether exposure to small amounts on a regular basis could be harmful to health. It seems those potentially at the highest risks are factory workers in the rubber and chemical industries who are continually exposed to these products.
This is a cause for concern considering the number of rubber products we all get into contact with on a daily basis. Let’s hope there are some conclusive findings soon.
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