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The dangers of plastic pollution and its harmful effects on human health
27. February 2019 at 09:00
My article is on the dangerous affects plastic is causing on human health or you can say on the whole environment.we should reduce the use of plastic for our better tomorrow.

Plastics are a part of our daily lives. It’s cheap, durable and ubiquitous and many things are made of it like water bottles, dishes, glasses, toys and even our cosmetics. Plastic material is used to manufacture hundreds of everyday products and it is found in almost every home but it’s not a safe and a perfect product to use and actually causing plastic pollution. There are numerous dangerous effects that plastic is causing and its affecting negatively on our health.

Plastic is made from byproducts of oil, natural gas, or coal.They are also known as polymers.These are toxic compounds and there are many additives added to the plastic like antioxidant, colorants, lubricants etc. These additives in the plastic are the main culprit in causing detrimental effect; they get absorbed into bodies, break down and cause the problem. They pollute the air, soil, water and most importantly they are a serious risk to human health and may increase the risk of cancer.

As the constant threat with the use of plastic, numerous scientists are developing new methods on a regular basis to reduce the usage of plastic.According to the recent data some of the plastic produced is recycled and some is incinerated but many plastic products are left as it is and it is estimated that in 1950 the World’s population of 2.5 billion produced 1.5 million tons of plastic, in 2016 a global population of more than 7 billion people produced over 320 million tons of plastic and it is set to double by 2034 which is very alarming.

Plastic pollution is a growing threat to human health.

Some of the problems plastic is causing for serious human health issues are;


Studies have showed that when we heat our food items or drinks in the microwave, plastic particles leach into food items and drinks and the toxins combines with the eatables and making them poisonous for us. These plastic particles which are leached out get absorbed through skin and causes damages.


Toxins released from the plastic get accumulated in the placenta. Babies are born already being exposed to dozens of chemicals and later on in their childhood they may suffer from different health conditions like asthma. The alarming 

Situation is that these problems occur before birth.


These toxins from plastic cause reproductive harm and infertility in both men and women. They may hinder genital development in baby boys.


Researches have linked certain chemicals found within plastic particles to cause certain kinds of cancer. One of the most common types is breast cancer, which leads women to a higher risk.


Plastics not only is absorbed in the blood and accumulate there, it also infer and mess with hormones within the body, like the thyroid. Now days, thyroid problem is becoming the most common type of hormonal imbalance and problems related to that.


High levels of plastic exposure contribute to greater cardiovascular disease risk. They also increase the odds of developing diabetes type 1 and 2.

Plastic is not only damaging the human health but actually it’s damaging our ecosystem as a whole.Plastic pollution is damaging the land, water ecosystem thus the food chain is getting upset due to increasing plastic pollution it acts in a way that the plastic rubbish breaks down into small toxic particles (micro particles) that pollute our water supply and enter our food chain.

Many times we litter the earth with plastic without knowing the dangers that it can cause to other animals and creatures that also co exist with us on the same planet. Many animals mistake the plastic that we throw away as food and they eat it, the plastic materials create a blockage or they fill up the digestive system that leads to the death of the animal especially in the marine animals. It is estimated that plastic kills over 100,000 marine animals and 1 million marine birds a year.

The littering of plastic waste on land has led to the destruction and the reduction in the quality of soil and other elements that are present in the Earth's land. Plastic contains a lot of chemicals that form a ground for breeding bacteria and viruses containing deadly diseases.

It is high time we rethink, reduce and recycle every time we encounter a piece of plastic so that it stops damaging our environment and our lives.We cannot completely remove our exposure to plastic and we cannot get rid of plastic from our lives but we can surely reduce its exposure by using some alternatives. The best way is to purchase and use plastic free items and with the help of them we will set ourselves for greater health and wellness.

For the alternative use of plastic we can consider these following tips:

  • Stop using plastic bags
  • Plastic shopping bags are commonly used everywhere, we can use paper bags or cloth bags instead of plastic shoppers.
  • Reusable plastic bottles 

Plastic bottles are the dangerous source, the toxins from the plastic water bottles leach into the water, particularly when the bottle is used more than once, or has been left in the light or heat for anytime.Instead of using the plastic bottles we should switch to reusable water bottles made from stainless steel or glass (with protective silicone sleeve) as they are easier to clean and safe.

  • Reusable cups and containers 

We use plastic cups and containers to store or carry our food and drinks.We should use glass jars instead of plastic for our drinks.Reusable containers should be used to avoid the use of plastic.

  • Avoid plastic straws and cutlery

We should use silicone or metal straws and steal wear instead of using plastic straws and cutlery.Bamboo cutlery is now introduced in the world so try using the stuff which are plastic free.

It has now become an obligation to share these useful information with our friends and family to reduce our contribution to the problem of plastic pollution and help raise awareness of the issue.It is very important to make our lives plastic free so be innovative, be creative, and embrace your life with less plastic!

Cite This Article As: Sundeela Syeda. "The dangers of plastic pollution and its harmful effects on human health." International Youth Journal, 27. February 2019.

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