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Prenatal screening program

Mother and daughter look at polluting factoryReproductive Health and the Environment

We encounter chemicals and other substances in everyday life that may affect your developing baby. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce your exposure to these potentially harmful substances at home, in the workplace, and in the environment. Many Californians are unaware that a number of everyday consumer products may pose potential harm.

Prospective parents should talk to their doctor and are encouraged to read more about this topic to learn about simple actions to promote a healthy pregnancy.

At the University of California, San Francisco, the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment produces All That Matters brochures. These are nontechnical, patient-centered guides that provide tips and suggestions for avoiding toxic chemical exposure at home, in the workplace and in the community. These resources include:

  • Toxic Matters – Provides tips on avoiding chemicals for pregnant women and women who want to become pregnant.
  • Cuestiones de Salud – a Spanish language edition of Toxic Matters.
  • Work Matters – Explains how to prevent toxic exposures in the workplace, and how pregnant women can secure their rights to a safe and healthy work environment.
  • Food Matters: What to Eat? – Explains how to select foods with lower exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • Pesticides Matter – Provides tips on avoiding exposure to pesticides at work and at home and how to protect one's family.

The All That Matters brochures are available online.

For a more detailed resource, the American Academy of Pediatrics produces a Pediatric Environmental Health book. This book provides comprehensive information on a wide range of environmental health issues.

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