Right from when the baby is in the womb to by the time one reaches adulthood, they’re exposed to plastic a million times in their lifetime. In a world ruled by the plastic era, most of us are trying to reduce our touchpoints with the same. However, sometimes it’s a little impossible to completely eliminate plastic from our lives. But that doesn't mean that we can’t move towards a sustainability model. The parade of plastics your child is exposed to can be stopped and derailed in the below ways, let’s have a sneak peak into the sustainable way of life.
- Prefer Wood over Plastic
Whether you go to Hamleys or a small toy shop on the street, you’ll find a plethora of plastic toys, dying to be bought and as one would quote many “waiting to fulfill their destinies”. However the safer bet towards a sustainable future would be to opt for wooden toys, they are biodegradable and safer for the environment. Another benefit of wooden toys would be that they don’t require batteries to operate on which then decreases the toxins released. Another advantage of wooden toys is that they promote cognitive development and creativity. Also wooden toys are safer for teething kids, a very safe alternative to the usual plastic ones.
- Cotton must not be forgotten
Cotton is a natural fiber that is absolutely organic, non toxic and biodegradable. Other materials like polyester and fleece are plastic and highly toxic to our planet. So right from the first swaddle and blanket that you wrap your kid in the hospital should be 100% Cotton or Bamboo which is even better.. Most synthetic materials are produced using various chemicals, when the child sleeps, unknowingly and unwantedly they are breathing in tiny particles and that’s why it’s all the more important to remove any synthetic material from the bedding. Research also says synthetic fiber beddings prevent babies from getting a good night’s sleep. Well we wouldn’t want that now, would we?
- Natural Fiber Clothing
While plastic diapering is the easiest, we need to go back to the older ways of life for the betterment of our baby and the environment. Most cloth diapers contain a waterproof poly cover, however they do have cotton inserts which are more sustainable and avoid any kind of baby rashes. Baby clothes today are made of all types of materials, it’s best to buy 100% cotton or other natural fibers like Bamboo which are totally non-toxic.
- We do not need that Plastic Cutlery
Many parents can complain that using glass around children is difficult because it becomes tough to handle breakage, but hey how about stainless steel? We can also replace those plastic sippy cups with bamboo wood cups, an option that’s really coming up these days. Considering the traditional “brown bags” for carrying food can also be a.) nostalgic b.) helpful for the environment.
- Do you really need plastic packaged food?
Not just for the environment but for a variety of health issues, avoiding those one-time use plastic bottles should sincerely be avoided. When one is shopping for groceries and other eatables it’s always advisable to choose glass and paper packages over plastic choices. It’s better to carry a cloth bag while shopping for fruits and vegetables rather than coming back home with a dozen plastic bags. Also while buying meat options it’s better to go to stores that wrap it in paper than plastic.
How you should think about sustainable parenting is not the “all or nothing” approach. It’s not necessary to make all changes today but yes one can definitely take baby steps and move towards a completely sustainable life one day. Slowly and steadily one can switch to a very hassle free sustainable lifestyle as a parent, however trying to do everything might add to a lot of stress with parenting which is not the intent here. Let’s take small steps to make a bigger impact together.