California Department of Public Health Issues Warning about Mercury-Tainted Skin Creams
The California Department of Public Health is issuing another warning about skin creams made in Mexico and South America. The warning comes after another set of mercury-tainted creams was discovered in a Ventura County flea market. Mercury is often used in face creams in Mexico and South America because it works to lighten skin and people use it to lighten age spots and freckles, but the creams can lead to mercury poisoning. Mercury-tainted skin creams can often be found in California flea markets, the internet, and in Mexico and South America. The Sacramento Bee reports:
Mercury poisoning can lead to neurological damage in infants and harm the brain, heart, kidneys and lungs of adults. Symptoms include irritability, nervousness, fatigue, tremors, weakness, difficulty concentrating or remembering, and tingling or numbness in hands, feet or around the mouth. Children and infants can be exposed by touching the cream on an adult’s face, then putting their fingers in their mouth. The mercury can also be transferred to clothes, bedding, furniture or other surfaces and then released into the air.
It is important to be aware of what is in skin creams by reading the labels and avoiding skin creams that do not have labels or that do not list the ingredients.
Any skin creams with the following ingredients should be avoided: mercurous chloride, calomel, mercurio, mercuric or mercury.
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