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COUNTY OF MONTEREY

HEALTH DEPARTMENT

Nationally Accredited for Providing Quality Health Services

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News

  • Jennie-O Turkey Recalls Raw Ground Turkey Products due to Possible Salmonella Reading Contamination

    Jennie-O Turkey Store Sales,has issued a recall for approximately 91,388 pounds of raw ground turkey products that may be associated with an illness outbreak of Salmonella. There is a concern that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

    11/16/2018

  • Protection from Wildfire Smoke Inhalation

    California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith is advising residents where wildfires have been burning, along with people in the smoke’s path, to stay indoors and reduce outdoor activity.

    11/13/2018

  • Family and Food Safety First this Thanksgiving

    Eating healthy this Thanksgiving begins with basic home food safety practices that are known to reduce the risk of foodborne illnesses. The Monterey County Health Department is reminding all cooks entering the kitchen this season to follow the Fight BAC!® basics of home food safety: Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill.

    11/12/2018

More

Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program

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little-girl-with-pencil-in-mouth-graphicstock-300x240Young children suffer from lead poisoning more frequently because they put everything in their mouth. Chewing and sucking on things is normal for young children. They can swallow these tiny bits of lead and become lead poisoned. If there is lead where your children live or play, it can very easily get on their hands and toys.

Most children who have lead poisoning do not look or act sick. Lead poisoning can cause permanent learning and behavior problems that may make it harder to be successful in school. There is no known safe blood lead level. The only way to know if a child is lead poisoned is by doing a blood lead test.


What is Lead?

Lead is a toxic metal that has been used for thousands of years in commercial & household products.

young-boy-playing-with-cars-300x226Sources of Lead

Lead has been found in:

  • Imported foods such as tamarind candy and chapulines (grasshoppers)
  • Traditional home remedies like Greta,Azarcon, or Paylooah
  • Dishes & pots made by hand, especially imported ceramics, decorated with paintings or varnish that contain lead
  • Imported toys & children’s jewelry
  • Traditional make-up like kohl and surma
  • Paint in houses built before 1978
  • Soil exposed to leaded gasoline (lead was banned from gasoline in 1995) or paint dust
  • Work places where employees do repair of radiators or batteries, recycling of batteries, welding with lead, or remodeling buildings built before 1978

young-child-playing-doctor-with-her-teddy-bear-214x300How is your child tested for lead?

The only way to know if your child is poisoned with lead is to do a blood test.  Ask your doctor to do a blood test to check for lead in your child. The test can be done by taking blood from the child’s finger or vein. If your child has a normal test, no followup will be needed.

What happens if your child’s test shows he/she is lead poisoned?

If your child is lead poisoned, the Monterey County Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program will contact you and schedule a home visit .

  • The Public Health Nurse will provide you with information on how to lower your child’s blood lead level.
  • The Registered Environmental Health Specialist will check your home in order to locate the source of lead.

 Simple steps you can take to protect your child

  • Wash your child’s hands often, especially before eating & sleeping.
  • Wash your child’s toys.
  • Mop floors and wet wipe window sills at least once a week.
  • Feed your child regular meals rich in calcium, iron, and vitamin C.
  • Do not use imported, older, or handmade dishes or pots for food or drinks unless they have been tested and do not have lead in them.
  • Make sure that the home remedy you use is safe. Traditional home remedies such as Greta and Azarcon (bright orange, yellow, or white powders), may contain lead. 
  • If your job exposes you to lead, always use lead-safe work practices, and change out of your work clothes and shoes, and wash or shower before you come home.
  • Cover bare soil where children play.
  • Ask your doctor to order a blood lead test on your child.

Little-girl-playing-with-toy-food-231x300For more information about lead poisoning, parents and caretakers may contact Monterey County’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program at 755-4704.

Learn More:

Click here to print a coloring storybook on lead-safe work
lead_coloringBook

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