Artificial turf is often made from polyethylene plastic grass along with an in-fill of rubber from ground-up recycled tires. As more and more grass fields are converted to synthetic turf, there is still a lot of issues when it comes to the possible health risks it imposes and its pros and cons.
Low maintenance costs – Although the initial cost is high, experts say that upkeep is cheaper. It won’t require treatment with fertilizers and pesticides.
Increased playability – Fields with artificial turf are somewhat more durable than those with natural grass. Due to the fact that playability is much higher, they allow broader access. They can actually be played on all the time. Also, they give young sports enthusiasts the ample space for practice. Moreover, the cancellation of games and practices because of extreme weather conditions will be eliminated.
Few injuries – Durable playing surfaces will mean there will be fewer injuries. Unlike grass which gets town by rough play that can turn into vast patches of slippery mud, installing fake turf is safer.
Conserve water – 50,000 gallons of water every week is consumed by watering an average grass playing field during the growing season. This amount of water can be used for other purposes.
Lead – When a person is exposed excessively to lead, he or she can suffer from stunted growth, severe mental retardation, and death. But today, there are already fake turf that contain less or no lead.
Heat hazard – It may be too hot to play on field with this kind of turf during extreme warm weather conditions. However, proponents say that the use of these fields can be managed to make sure that athletes won’t play at the hottest times of the day and are hydrated adequately.
Zinc – Apart from lead, health experts are also debating on using this kind of turf because it may contain zinc. Different studies showed that there are potentially dangerous chemical compounds that can escape into the air or perhaps leach into water under different conditions. But then, the levels of zinc found leaking into water were very high. There are also studies showing that there is a direct link between continued zinc exposure and cardiovascular diseases putting green turf.
Bacterial breeding area – Medical experts discovered that there are certain bacteria that can survive on polyethylene plastic, a compound that is used to make synthetic turf for about 90 days. Be aware also that sweat, blood, skin cells, and other materials can stay on this kind of turf due to the fact that the fields are not cleaned or even washed.