Roses forum→Are hydrogels safe to use health-wise?

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Tuscany, Italy
bart2018
Dec 3, 2020 5:53 AM CST
When I say "hydrogel", what I mean are those water-retaining crystals that are used (mostly for potted plants) to help maintain humidity in the soil and to allow the gardener to cut down a bit with watering. I wanted to use them out in my garden around my new implants to help keep them hydrated between waterings,but I found the following article on Internet: https://cals.arizona.edu/yavap... (hope the link works). Mainly I'm troubled by the following statement: " Aside from these variable results, some gardeners are concerned with the safety of PAM hydrogels. As the name suggests, polyacrylamides consist of many linked acrylamide subunits. Acrylamide is a known neurotoxin in humans and is suspected to be carcinogenic as well. During the manufacture of PAM gels, residual acrylamide is present as a contaminant and strictly regulated in the United States to levels no more than 0.05% or 500 ppm for agricultural use. However, an international study recommended that polyacrylamide gels used in cosmetics contain a residual monomer level of only 0.1 to 0.5 ppm. Therefore, the PAM hydrogels manufactured for agricultural and garden use can contain much greater concentrations of (1,000 to 5,000 times) toxic acrylamide than that found in personal products causing concern among some users.
Additional health issues can be presented by exposure to the more or less intact polyacrylamide gel where toxic effects have documented. Health risks associated with the breakdown products of PAM hydrogels are entirely unknown, but exposure risk could be great to gardeners and green industry workers that are exposed over time."
Now, this article is from the year 2009-more than 10 years ago. I'm wondering if anything has changed since then,if there's been any new research or better yet, a change in the formulas used to make the gels. Does anyone have any more up-dated information? Thanks in advance!
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
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Calif_Sue
Dec 3, 2020 11:31 AM CST

Moderator

Duplicated thread in the AAQ forum, please post there.
The thread "Are hydrogels safe to use health-wise? " in Ask a Question forum
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[Last edited by Calif_Sue - Dec 6, 2020 5:44 PM (+)]
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Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Dec 6, 2020 5:18 PM CST
bart2018 said:
Additional health issues can be presented by exposure to the more or less intact polyacrylamide gel where toxic effects have documented. Health risks associated with the breakdown products of PAM hydrogels are entirely unknown, but exposure risk could be great to gardeners and green industry workers that are exposed over time."


Unless you are literally handling the stuff day, after day, after day, after day... it is not going to get you.
BUT
As usual I am sure there is .000009 percent of the population who are allergic to the stuff.
If you are afraid because of hear-say, best for you to stay away as more than one doctor has told me a persons state of mind has more to do with the person getting an illness, real or imagined, than the item the person is paranoid about.
[Last edited by RpR - Dec 6, 2020 5:47 PM (+)]
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Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
Sunset Zone 15
Plant Database Moderator Region: California Cottage Gardener Garden Photography Roses Clematis
Houseplants Foliage Fan Keeper of Poultry Dog Lover Birds Hummingbirder
Image
Calif_Sue
Dec 6, 2020 5:44 PM CST

Moderator

@RpR, please also post on the ongoing discussion on the linked thread. Thumbs up
My gardening Blog!
Handmade quilts, face masks, new & vintage fabrics in my Etsy store. Summer Song Cottage
Instagram Sewing posts

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