Online Program

Female college student awareness of exposures to environmental toxins in personal care products and its effect on preconception health

Monday, November 4, 2013

Lisa Chan, RNC-OB, BSN, Dr. Lillian R. Goodman Department of Nursing School of Education, Health and Natural Sciences, Worcester State University, Worcester, MA
Background: Exposures to environmental toxins in personal care products raise health concerns for women of childbearing age around the world because many products contain numerous chemical ingredients that have been known to affect reproduction, fertility, preconception health, asthma, and some have been associate with hormone disruptions, birth defects, cancers, neurological, and developmental problems. Most consumers are likely unaware of the bio-accumulative risks that exposure from daily use of these products pose. The objective is to describe what female students know about environmental toxins in personal care products and the effect these products may have on preconception health. Methods: This study is planned for a university campus beginning February 2013. The targeted sample of 66-159 participants is described as 18-24 year old, non-pregnant, English speaking, female college students from three female dominated majors identified as: Nursing, Psychology, and Communication Sciences and Disorders. All students will complete demographic information and a researcher constructed mixed-method questionnaire which asks students to recall products used during the past 24 hours and their opinions about exposure risks related to reproductive health. Results: It is anticipated that findings will describe the prevalence of student exposures to environmental toxins from personal care product use and awareness of risk related to preconception health. Conclusion: This investigation may help nurses gain broader perspective of female understanding of health risks associated with exposures of environmental toxins during the childbearing years, and may be useful in creating educational opportunities that reduce risks, improve health, and improve birth outcomes both locally and globally.

Learning Areas:

Environmental health sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the prevalence of environmental exposures from toxins in personal care products among female college students Assess female college students' perceived health risk of exposures to environmental toxins during preconception and childbearing years.

Keyword(s): Environmental Exposures, Reproductive Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am graduate nursing student with a particular interest and passion in environment health literacy, environmental exposures, and the health of women, infants and family health. For much of my nursing career, my focus has been on care and education of women, infants, and families during the prenatal and postpartum period. I am presently the principal investigator on the proposed project and submitted abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.