The County of San Bernardino Department of Public Health announced plans today to commemorate Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, Oct. 21 to 27. The theme this year is, “Dust and dirt with lead can hurt. Keep kids away from lead where they play.” The week-long campaign will educate families and community members about ways to prevent lead poisoning and the importance of testing children for lead.
Lead poisoning can seriously affect a child’s brain and nervous system. It can cause learning and behavioral problems. A blood lead test is the only way to identify and confirm lead poisoning in children.
“The purpose of this campaign is to remind parents that lead poisoning can be detrimental to young children’s health and development,” said Dr. Ohikhuare, Health Officer of the County of San Bernardino Department of Public Health. “It is important for parents to ask their child’s doctor about lead testing.”
In California, children can be exposed to lead by ingesting lead-contaminated dust, paint chips from deteriorating lead-based paint, and lead-contaminated soil. Other sources of lead poisoning include lead dust brought home on parents’ or guardians’ work clothes, certain imported ceramic pottery, painted objects, traditional home remedies, and imported spices, candies, and other food products. Additionally, activities that involve lead products such as soldering, making stained glass, and handling bullets or fishing sinkers can put children at risk.
If you would like to schedule a free lead inspection of your home, please call 909-383-3052. If lead-based paint hazards are identified in your home during the inspection, the inspector will review abatement options with you and provide available resources for lead hazard control services.
All parents and caregivers of young children are invited to visit http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/clppb for more information and ways to protect children from this silent and serious environmental disease.