For a lot of people, the smell of baby powder brings back a flood of lovely memories of a time when everything was much simpler and life was grand. As it turns out baby powder, which is typically made of talc, may be the cause of health problems in later life.
Talcum powder is derived from hydrous magnesium silicate (Mg3H2(SiO3)4) which is the softest known mineral in the world. It is highly commonly in all parts of the world and used extensively in many industries such as making paper and plastic, and may be an ingredient in many common household products such rubber, paint, even food i.e. anti-caking agent in table salt.
Cosmetic grade talc is used to make talcum powder by crushing, drying, and milling it before being mixed with cosmetics or used as a loose powder to keep baby’s (and mom’s) nether regions dry and sweet-smelling. There has long been suspicion, hitherto unproven, that talcum powder use may be linked to some diseases, namely ovarian cancer, lung cancer, and pulmonary problems.
One of the issues that have come up regarding the safety of talcum powder is that talc deposits are usually found in proximity to asbestos ore. It is thought that in the mining and processing of talc, it may be contaminated with asbestos fibers, exposure to which could lead to lung cancer. However, no studies have yet found any trace of asbestos in commercial talc.
However, as suggested by talcum powder lawsuit lawyers at Williams Kherkher, there is evidence that talc particles itself may be the culprit. Cancer tissue from some women with ovarian cancer revealed the presence of talc, suggesting that the insolubility of the mineral inside the body could trigger a carcinogenic response. One study estimated that talc particles can stay in the lungs for as long as 8 years before it is dissolved.
The latest meta-analysis indicates a link between regularly using talc powder in the genital area by women and ovarian cancer. It is thought that talc particles travel up the woman’s genital tract into the body and irritates the tissue, causing an inflammation that can encourage cancer growth.