- this is a freelance article by Helen Fryer
As parents, we all want to do what’s best for our children. Making decisions about what is best, however, can sometimes be difficult because there is so much information and misinformation available to parents that It can be both hard and time consuming to sift through it all and make the right choices. One of the parenting issues that is currently very active in the media is whether or not BPA (Bisphenol A) exposure is harmful, and whether this is something we should expose our children to. BPA is found in a wide variety of household products that our children regularly interact with, but the most concerning products that contain BPA are baby bottles and plastic water bottles. Although there is much debate about exactly how harmful BPA and what effects it can have, all current research agrees that BPA can imitate our body's own hormones in a way that could be hazardous for health, which can lead to reproductive disorders, impotence and even heart attacks. It has even been found that pregnant women exposed to BPA are at a slightly higher risk of suffering from a miscarriage than women who avoid BPA exposure.  It is thought that children and babies are more sensitive than adults to BPA, which is why it is so important to opt for BPA free drinking receptacles (such as the Drinkadeux bottle) when choosing a water bottle for your children. Because all of the inner walls of the Drinkadeux bottles are made of glass, there is no risk of any BPA exposure, ensuring that your children remain protected and safe.
The risk of BPAs that are associated with many water bottles shouldn’t put you off ensuring that your children always have access to fresh and clean water to hand, particularly when there are BPA free alternatives available, such as the Drinkadeux. Along with ensuring that they get the right balance of vitamins and minerals and take all the daily supplements they need,  keeping well hydrated  and ensuring that your child drinks their recommended eight glasses of water each day is one of the most important things that you can do for their health. Water makes up more than half of an individual’s body weight, and is essential for lubricating your joints and muscles, maintaining your body temperature and for your general health and wellbeing. Dehydration can lead to headaches, dizziness and feelings of confusion. In children of all ages, dehydration can be a very serious health concern and can even have long term consequences. Ensuring your children carry a water bottle to school, to their extracurricular activities and anytime they play sport is one of the most important things you can do to encourage your children to keep hydrated and to drink water as regularly as possible. Just always make sure that you choose a BPA free water bottle  and never reuse soft plastic bottles (the kind of bottles you will purchase water in at the grocery store). When they are reused these soft plastics become more brittle; and the more brittle they are the more BPA they will secrete into the water contained within them. Certainly something to avoid.
Tips for Staying Hydrated
As well as ensuring your children carry water bottles with them at all times, there are other things that parents can do to keep their family as well hydrated as possible. If your children don’t enjoy drinking plain water, you could consider adding a slice or lime or lemon, or even some natural fruit cordial. Encourage your children to drink water rather than snack; after all, the sensation of thirst is often confused with hunger and so your child may well be satisfied with water rather than a snack, increasing their hydration levels.
 “What is BPA (Besphenol A)? Is BPA harmful?”, Medical News Today, http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/221205.php
 “Miscarriage risk rises with BPA exposure, study finds”, Environmental Health News, http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs/news/2014/apr/bpa-miscarriages
 “The benefits of fish oils for children”, Kwik Med, http://www.kwikmed.org/benefits-fish-oils-children
 “Hydration: Why it’s so important”, Family Doctor, http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/prevention-wellness/food-nutrition/nutrients/hydration-why-its-so-important.html
 “Just how harmful are Bisphenol A plastics?” Scientific American, http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/just-how-harmful-are-bisphenol-a-plastics/