What can I do if I am concerned about exposure to a toxic chemical?
If you think you have been exposed to harmful chemicals at work, please visit the website of the Occupational Health Branch, California Department of Public Health or call the Workplace Hazard Helpline (866) 282-5516 for more information.
For possible chemical exposures that are not work-related, please talk with your physician or health-care provider. Being exposed to a toxic chemical or finding the chemical in your body does not, by itself, indicate that you have or will have a health problem. Also, for most chemicals that have been studied, effects are generally more severe or more likely to occur with high, rather than low, levels of exposure. For some chemicals, like the metal lead, we have a very good understanding of the blood levels that cause serious health effects in infants, children and adults. For most chemicals, however, we do not know the relationship between levels in the blood and health effects.
More information about preventing childhood lead poisoning is available on the California Department of Public Health website.
Scientists analyze information from animal and human studies to understand the levels at which chemicals are likely to be harmful. However, most chemicals in use today have not been thoroughly studied regarding their potential toxicity to humans.