Environmental Hazards

We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children - Native American Proverb

Environmental Hazards
Environmental Hazards

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Too Clean for Our Children’s Good?

When a toddler’s pacifier falls out of his mouth and onto the ground, does it get confiscated and boiled by anxious parents or just licked off and reinserted by the more casually inclined?

Many parents, quite reasonably, worry about germs and dirt finding their way into a child’s mouth. But many have also heard in recent years of the “hygiene hypothesis,” which holds that some exposure to germs and microorganisms in early childhood is actually good for us because it helps develop the immune system. A 2013 Swedish study, for example, showed that children whose parents just sucked their pacifiers clean had a lower risk of developing eczema.

When we talk about the hygiene…

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 Too Clean for Our Children’s Good?

Scrupulously separating children from the microbes that can be found in impure water, for example, or unpasteurized milk has played a major role in reducing infant and child mortality, enabling millions of children to live and thrive. But we’ve also come to ask, in recent years, whether children who are too completely walled off from the microbial surroundings in which our species evolved may grow up with some negative consequences of our ever-cleaner homes.

10 Hidden Health Hazards in Your Home

Some of the most serious hazards aren't outdoors—they're hiding in plain sight in even the most safety-minded households. Learn which unexpected items are risky, and take steps to avoid an accident.

11 Toxic Chemicals Affecting Brain Development In Children

Because of the frequency with which these chemicals are present in our everyday lives – even banned ones – and the rising rates of developmental disorders in children, the authors say that urgent change should take place: “A new framework of action is needed.”

12 Surprisingly Common Child Safety Dangers Found Around Homes

It’s an exciting time when your baby starts walking and officially becomes a toddler, but their newfound mobility leaves them free to roam your house and get into all sorts of things. At best, it’s a nuisance; at worst, it’s straight-up dangerous.

4 Tips to Keep Your Kids from Swallowing Button Batteries

The biggest risk in swallowing these button batteries isn’t choking, as many people might suspect. It’s burning. When a button battery is swallowed, the saliva triggers an electrical current. This leads to a chemical reaction that can cause severe damage to kids in as little as two hours. Once burning begins, the results can affect a child for a lifetime.

Top 10 dangers for kids

A young boy performs a skateboard jump. He does not wear a helmet.From toxins to head injuries, children today face serious threats to their health. Perhaps more than ever it is important for parents to be aware of potential childhood dangers.

Green & Healthy Homes Initiative

The national Green & Healthy Homes Initiative (GHHI) is implementing a cost-effective and integrated approach to housing interventions by combining federal and philanthropic investments in weatherization, energy efficiency, health and safety. GHHI is setting a new standard for policies and practices to create more sustainable, affordable and healthier homes.

TVA Kids

TVA has a lot of information to help students understand what electricity is and how it's generated.

Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health

The Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health (the Center) conducts community-based research in the United States and overseas to study the health effects of prenatal and early postnatal exposures to common urban pollutants, with the aim of preventing environmentally related disease in children.


Much about how the environment can affect our health is unknown. What we do know is that environmental hazard exposure can affect a child's growth and development. The Tracking Network's information on children's environmental health can help you understand how you can protect children from environmental exposures so they can live a safer, healthier lives.


Children may be more vulnerable to environmental exposures than adults because their bodily systems are still developing, they eat more, drink more, and breathe more in proportion to their body size & their behavior can expose them more to chemicals and organisms. Protecting children's health from environmental risks is fundamental to EPA's mission.

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