Hi everyone! Thanks for taking the time to visit. I wanted to let my readers know that the FDA has issued a warning that some skin creams containing mercury have been illegally introduced to the American market. If you have purchased one of these products stop using immediately. Seek medical attention if you have any of the following symptoms of mercury poisoning:
- changes in vision or hearing
- memory problems
- numbness and tingling in hands, feet or around mouth
“Exposure to mercury can have serious health consequences,” says Charles Lee, M.D., a senior medical advisor at FDA. “It can damage the kidneys and the nervous system, and interfere with the development of the brain in unborn children and very young children.”
You don’t have to use the product yourself to be affected, says FDA toxicologist Mike Bolger, Ph.D. “People—particularly children—can get mercury in their bodies from breathing in mercury vapors if a member of the household uses a skin cream containing mercury.” Infants and small children can ingest mercury if they touch their parents who have used these products, get cream on their hands and then put their hands and fingers into their mouth, which they are prone to do, adds Bolger.
How to Protect Yourself (From FDA Site)
- Check the label of any skin lightening, anti-aging or other skin product you use. If you see the words “mercurous chloride,” “calomel,” “mercuric,” “mercurio,” or “mercury,” stop using the product immediately.
- If there is no label or no ingredients are listed, do not use the product. Federal law requires that ingredients be listed on the label of any cosmetic or drug.
- Don’t use products labeled in languages other than English unless English labeling is also provided.
- If you suspect you have been using a product with mercury, stop using it immediately. Thoroughly wash your hands and any other parts of your body that have come in contact with the product. Contact your health care professional or a medical care clinic for advice.
- If you have questions, call your health care professional or the Poison Center8 9 at 1-800-222-1222; it is open 24 hours a day.
- Before throwing out a product that may contain mercury, seal it in a plastic bag or leak-proof container. Check with your local environmental, health or solid waste agency for disposal instructions. Some communities have special collections or other options for disposing of household hazardous waste.
For more information visit the FDA