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Study links toxins to developmental disorders

Toxic Chemicals Trigger Developmental Disorders

AMMON, Idaho - Toxic chemicals may be triggering the recent increase in disabilities like autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and dyslexia.

A study published in Lancet Neurology this month linked children who have these disorders to a toxic overload exposure either in the womb or as an infant.

Some of the specific toxins in the study were lead and pesticides, which are found in everything from food to children's toys.

Addie Overton is 8 years old. During a visit to her doctor's office Friday, she was constantly reminded about putting toys in her mouth. Addie was diagnosed with autism just before her second birthday.

"It was hard, but it was nice to have an answer of why she was developing so slow," said Katie Overton, Addie's mother.

Katie was 22 years old when Addie was born. The labor was tough, she had an epidural, then was given Pitocin, a drug to speed up delivery. Katie also lost a lot of blood and had a blood transfusion. Addie was delivered by a cesarean section. She was also not breastfed, but was given formula. Katie believes all of that contributed to autism.

"I wish I knew what I know now eight years ago. like I could have majorly impacted her life back then," said Overton.

Overton said she believes Addie's toys also contributed to toxic chemical exposure.

"She chews on little plastic toys a lot. So we're thinking it may be from those toys," said Overton.

Monika Buerger, owner of Eagle Canyon Wellness and Sensory Development in Ammon said that was a red flag, so she tested Addie's levels.

"We did find high levels of various heavy metals, and lead with her was very high, which I had anticipated," said Buerger and added "I believe that is from the toys."

The study shows lead in children's toys are part of the problem, so areĀ  toxins people are exposed to everyday like a solvent used in dry cleaning, a flame retardant commonly used in electronics, furniture and car interiors.

"Your cells are swimming in this toxic soup. Let's use a little common sense and say how good can this toxic soup be for a developing human being," said Buerger.

"It's going to be a slow process but she's going to pull through. She's wonderful I wouldn't trade her for anything. I just would like to hear her voice," said Overton.

On Friday, a bill was introduced to tighten regulation of chemicals. Part of it would require the Environmental Protection Agency to weigh the economic benefits of a chemical, like whether it leaves streaks on your windows, against whether it causes birth defects, autism or infertility.

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