Some disadvantages of using plastics are that they have a long life cycle, can have a negative environmental impact, contribute to health problems and are a choking or breathing hazard. Plastic objects like bottles or cups can have a very long life cycle. For example, a plastic cup in a landfill can take between 50 to 80 years before it decomposes.
When waste plastic products end up in rivers, oceans and landfills, they can contaminant the soil, air and water sources. Similarly, there are some health risks associated with plastics because of the chemical additives used in these products, like bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates. These additives may contribute to health issues, such as asthma and cancer, according to the Ecology Center.
For small children, small plastic pieces or bags may be dangerous because they can pose a choking hazard.