Grants available to fix lead hazards in homes for those that qualify.
There is financial assistance available to fix lead hazards in your home.
See Pre-Application brochure for more information.
Online Application for Lead Hazard Remediation
The Environmental Health Division works jointly with our department's Public Health Nurses and other professionals as part of the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP) team. Click here to learn more about the CLPPP program.
Environmental Health Division roles in addressing lead poisoning:
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Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home (English)
Proteja a su familia del plomo en su hogar (Spanish)
How to control lead hazards in my home?
What is Lead Poisoning?
Lead poisoning is caused by the presence of lead in the body. There is no known safe level of lead to have in the body but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified five micrograms per deciliter (5mcg/dl) as the level of concern. Once lead is present in a child's body, it can cause learning disabilities, behavioral problems , damage to the central nervous system, and at very high levels seizures, coma, and even death. Adult lead poisoning can also cause other health and reproductive problems. Children's growing bodies absorb more lead than adults. (Lead Health Effects)
There is no cure for lead poisoning but medical treatment can lower the level of lead in the blood. The best way to address childhood lead poisoning is to prevent children from being exposed to lead hazards.
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Common Sources of Lead Poisoning
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- Paint - Cover old paint that is chipping, flaking or peeling. Remove fallen paint chips immediately and prevent children from chewing on or picking at paint on windowsills and other painted areas.
- Dust - Lead-based paint may create lead dust that settles on surfaces throughout the home. Babies and young children often put their hands in their mouth. These objects can have lead dust on them. Regularly mop and wipe floors, windowsills, and window frames with warm water and a general cleanser.
- Soil- Soil can pick up lead from exterior paint or other sources, such as past use of leaded gas in cars. Lead-based paint may fall into soil around the foundations of homes. Do not let children eat soil or play in bare soil in these areas. Cover bare soil with grass, plants, bark, rocks or concrete.
- Water - Tap water that has corrosion of older fixtures, solder that connects pipes or plumbing fixtures may have lead in it. The only way to verify if the water has lead is to have it tested by an approved laboratory.
Other Sources of Lead
- Toys - Use toys that can be easily washed and wash them regularly.
- Pottery - Handmade or imported pottery and tableware may contain leaded paint or glaze. Do not use these products for serving or storing food or beverages.
- Candy - Imported candy may contain lead. Avoid giving children imported candies.
- Spices - Spices such as tamarind and turmeric have been found to contain lead. Avoid giving children these spices.
- Home remedies - Traditional remedies, also known as folk remedies, including Surma, Azarcon, Greta, Peluam, Hauxeeb and Sindoor may contain very high levels of lead. Give your child only medicines that are doctor approved.
- Jewelry and accessories - High levels of lead have been found in inexpensive children’s jewelry and adult costume jewelry. Do not let young children wear or play with jewelry.
Don't take lead home with you - Jobs such as auto repair, construction, metal work, and battery manufacturing or working at a shooting range may expose children to lead that is brought home on work clothes and shoes. Anyone in the home that works in jobs where lead may be present should change their clothes and shoes before entering the home.
Ways to Protect Your Family from Lead
Wash your children's hands frequently.
Wash your hands and your children's hands often, especially after outside play, before they eat meal, and before nap time and bed time.
Check your family for lead.
If you're concerned that your child might be at risk for lead poisoning, talk to your medical provider for advice on testing your children. Your medical provider may recommend a blood test for lead poisoning to make or rule out a diagnosis of lead poisoning. They can also explain what the test results mean and if more testing will be needed.
Well Fed=Less Lead
Nutrition (in English) Give children a healthy diet with foods rich in iron, calcium and vitamin C. A healthy diet helps prevent lead absorption into the body. Click on one of the following links for more information about preventing lead poisoning in your child through nutrition. (Nutrition in Spanish)
Learn More About Lead Recalls
Lead-Safe Work Practices
- Older homes and buildings built before 1978 may contain lead-based paint. Disturbing lead-based paint during remodeling and repainting can create dangerous lead dust. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website for more information on renovating or painting your home.
- Federal law requires that contractors performing renovation, repair, and painting projects that disturbs painted surfaces in homes built before 1978, in childcare facilities and schools built before 1978, or in a home that a child under six years of age visits regularly, be certified and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. The Lead Safe Certified Guide to Renovate Right (PDF in English) (In Spanish)
- <div text"="" section=""> <div text"="" section="">Get a list of the California Department of Public Health Certified Lead Professionals who are trained to do lead-safe work in your home by visiting the State of California's Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch website or by calling (800) 597-LEAD.