Poisoning myself?

I am currently residing in a communal living arrangement where my meals are provided in a central dining facility. In the drink area they have a very nice selection of cold teas in a fountain drink dispensor. This includes my favorite, regular unsweetened tea. I like my iced tea with lemon. Luckily they have provided lemon wedges. Here is where the question comes.

The drink cups are styrofoam. When I squeeze the lemon wedge into the cup some of the lemon juice hits the sides. I noticed the juice pits the side of the cup. The citric acid is destroying some of the styrofoam. Am I poisoning myself with polystyrene? Is the residue from the cup and acid reaction going into my tea? There is no plastic taste to the drink. Help me before I die a horrible death.

Dart Container’s take on it.

The Master speaks, though there’s nothing definite about the physical danger of drinking dissolved polystyrene there.

Dart has a point, though it is an industry page. Polystyrene probably wouldn’t have been approved for food container use if it were actually toxic.

The food at the dining hole at my college seemed to eat into the styrofoam to-go containers a bit. I haven’t died of it yet, and it’s been 10 years (has it really?) since I graduated.

And, from what I understand, gasoline completely obliterates it in rabbit-fast time.

You might bring your own ceramic, metal, or glass mug or cup into said communal facility.

Due to circumstances beyond my control that is not possible most of the time.

:confused: How is this “not a chemical action”?

It’s dissolving the material, not reacting with it. The linked page appears to be saying that rather than the plastic going into solution in the drink, the limonene collapses the blown structure of the polystyrene, but remains more or less bound to it.

I don’t know. I had noticed that, also, and wondered what they really meant there.

I thought dissolving something was considered a chemical action, but it’s been a while since I learned this sort of stuff.

The term ‘chemical action’ is vague - I’m sure they mean chemical reaction, which doesn’t usually mean just dissolving something.