Swedish study finds that living in a house with vinyl floors increases levels of phthalates in pregnant women
If you have or are considering vinyl flooring then this information is important to consider.
Nerang Tiles has a range of vinyl, ceramic and porcelain tiles on display at its Gold Coast tile showroom. It is important to have as much information as possible so you can make an informed choice on the most suitable flooring for your application.
It was previously reported that phthalates were linked to miscarriages. Evidence has now arisen that this harmful substance is linked to vinyl flooring as well.
Almost all types of vinyl flooring are functionally a great flooring choice. However their soft and gentle touch is most commonly due to the introduction of the substance phthalate. Phthalates are suspected to be endocrine disruptors and, according to some studies, related to the rate of miscarriages. Another study related phthalates to lower IQ levels (see here, here or here).
A new study from Sweden has established that PVC flooring in residential and commercial spaces is linked to higher intake and levels of phthalates in people's urine (see here).
The study reminds us that when manufacturing vinyl flooring, phthalates are not chemically bound to the product but mixed in. This means that it has the potential to migrate from the vinyl into the surround environment, such as your body.
The extensive use of PVC flooring (vinyl) throughout the world, particularly in colder climates, raises the question as to what degree such materials contribute to human uptake of phthalates. The aim of the present study is to investigate whether residential PVC flooring is related to the urinary levels of phthalate metabolites in pregnant women in the Swedish Environmental Longitudinal, Mother and child, Asthma and allergy (SELMA) study.
The study concluded:
This study has found significantly higher urinary levels of the BBzP metabolite (MBzP) in pregnant women living in homes with PVC flooring as compared to other flooring materials. Since BBzP is a regulated phthalate, our findings may bring the awareness of the usage of BBzP.
It should be noted that many manufacturers of what is now called Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) claim that they are phthalate-free. That is why they are tiles instead of sheet goods; they do not need as much plasticizer to soften it up. However they are still made up of PVC and are not eco friendly. Although significantly reducing the amount of phthalate in the product is a giant leap in the right direction for the industry and towards meeting the demands of the market, for safe, healthy and practical flooring solutions.
But we have one study that says phthalates cause miscarriages and another that says vinyl floors increase the amount of phthalates in pregnant women. This raises some concerns and is an important factor to consider when choosing a flooring application.
Nerang Tiles has a range of Luxury Vinyl Tile with reduced phthalate as well as a massive range of eco safe ceramic and porcelain tiles to choose from. It is important to have as much information about each product in our showroom before making a choice for your flooring. Ask our expert design team for more information regarding flooring solutions and which product best suits your application and style of living.