Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention
To increase awareness about lead poisoning in children through increased health education, community outreach, and advocacy for timely lead screenings for children in our community.
The Colusa County Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP) offers outreach and education about lead poisoning and provides nurse case management for children with lead poisoning. Lead poisoning can be harmful and negatively affect a child’s development and behavior. The good news is that lead poisoning is preventable!
Colusa County Public Health offers community group presentations on Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention. Contact the Colusa County CLPPP Coordinator at 530-458-0380. Note: our ability to provide presentations is dependent on COVID-19 containment and mitigation guidelines.
For more information on lead poisoning visit the California Department of Public Health’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Program Branch webpage.
Health Care Providers: Refer to the Health Care Provider webpage at the California Department of Public Health’s Lead Poisoning Prevention website for further resources, or contact the Colusa County CLPPP Coordinator at 530-458-0380.
What is Lead?
• Lead is a soft metal found in the earth. It can move around in the environment, but it does not break down and go away.
• Lead is found in many items such as lead-based paint, dirt contaminated by lead, hand-made pottery, metal jewelry, and some imported candies and spices.
What is Lead Poisoning?
• Lead poisoning is the accumulation of lead in the body over time. Poisoning occurs by inhaling or ingesting lead. Children under 6 years old are most vulnerable. Mothers can pass lead to their babies during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.
• There is no known safe level of lead in the body.
• Most children who have lead poisoning do not look or act sick. Over time, higher levels of lead can harm a child’s nervous system and brain. Lead poisoning may cause a child to have behavior problems, difficulty paying attention, poor growth, and damage to the kidneys and other body organs.
What can a parent/caregiver do to prevent lead poisoning?
• Keep your home clean and dust-free by using a wet mop or damp cloth. Children can get lead poisoning from lead paint in homes built before 1978. When old paint cracks and peels, it makes lead dust.
• Do not let your child suck or chew on painted surfaces or on items that may contain lead.
• Do not let your child eat dirt. Cover bare dirt where your child plays.
• Wash your child’s hands after playing, before eating, and before sleeping.
• Avoid imported foods, candies, spices, and traditional remedies that may have lead.
- Feed your child healthy foods with calcium, iron, and vitamin C. These foods may help keep lead out of the body.
- Calcium is in milk, yogurt, cheese, and green leafy vegetables like spinach.
- Iron is in lean red meats, beans, peanut butter, and cereals
- Vitamin C is in fruit, green and red bell peppers, broccoli, and cauliflower
Adults with jobs or hobbies that work with lead may bring lead dust home on their clothes or equipment and expose household members. For more on job or hobby lead poisoning, see the Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.
Children should be tested for lead at ages 1 and 2 years old. Any child up to 6 years old who has never been tested for lead should be tested.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- American Academy of Pediatrics
- Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Program
- Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
- United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- Consumer Protection and Safety Commission (CPSC)