Lead In Christmas Lights
The wires of many electrical devices, including Christmas lights, are insulated inside a plastic (PVC) coating. Some sort of stabilizer must be added to the PVC so that it will be heat resistant. PVC stabilizers commonly include metals such as lead, cadmium and tin.
The concern with these Christmas lights is that the lead will leech out of the PVC and be deposited on your hands while you are decorating. Lights containing lead that are sold in California must carry a Proposition 65 warning label, but those sold elsewhere contain no warnings. Lights manufactured in the United States are less likely to contain lead.
Do not allow your children to handle Christmas lights. Wash your hands thoroughly after handling them yourself.
You should also be aware that those Christmas lights aren?t the only things to be cautious about when selecting your holiday decor. Artificial Christmas trees made of PVC also contain stabilizers.
Researchers at the Environmental Quality Institute at the University of North Carolina-Asheville have found that some PVC trees release lead dust into the air and onto the ground and presents underneath the tree. Your children can breathe the dust and contaminate their hands while touching the ground or unwrapping gifts. As we all know, lead exposure is of particular concern during childhood.
To find out if your holiday decorations contain lead, order a $12.00 dust test kit from CWLTI. http://www.leadtesting.org/order.htm
This article is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended to serve as medical advice or as a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be interpreted as recommendation for treatment. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your child, please seek assistance from a qualified health care provider before using any health information.
© Christine Climer
About the Author: Christine Climer is a registered nurse with diverse clinical experience and early childhood education background. She specializes in the promotion of child and family health through her private practice, http://www.bestbabynurse.com , in Dallas, Texas. She also volunteers as health and wellness editor for http://www.naturalfamilyonline.com .