If it’s made with talc, a mineral made from hydrated magnesium silicate, baby powder is very dangerous and can cause serious lung damage, according to The American Academy of Pediatrics. Although talcum powder was once ubiquitous back in the day, later research showed that the tiny particles are easily inhaled by infants and dries out their mucous membranes, causing wheezing and, in the most serious cases, pneumonia and respiratory failure.
The jury is still out on whether talc could also cause cancer. Some studies have shown a link but there doesn’t seem to be any agreement within the scientific community. Still, because of the risk, the American Cancer Society suggests that women (including children, of course) avoid or limit use of talc.
The good news is that there are safer baby powders on the market that use cornstarch instead of talc. California Baby’s Calming Organic Powder is made from corn and tapioca starches and safely eases diaper chafing and chubby folds in the skin. Is your baby in full-on drooling mode? Pat a little in neck creases to dry the drool. And your baby will just love a little sprinkle between his toes!