Mercury Poisoning Hits U.S. in Illegal Skin Bleaching Creams

It appears there’s an intense aesthetic worship of one group of people to the other going on. White folks are running out to tan and get lip injections and butt lifts and now minorities everywhere are bleaching their skin.  But while there have been serious warnings about tanning causing skin cancer, no one said anything about the detriment of skin bleaching.

According to the Grio, there have been cases of mercury poisoning popping up all over the country where Latinas, Asians, Filipinas, and Africans have been purchasing an illegal bleaching cream out of Mexico.  Mercury blocks melanin which produces color or pigmentation.

In California, a 39-year-old  Mexican-American woman in Alameda County was diagnosed with mercury poisoning and it was discovered that she had been using the illegal skin bleaching cream that is under investigation by health officials in San Francisco, San Jose, and Oakland.

So far, California health officials working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found:

“…a  report in January that indicated at least 22 people in five households in California and Virginia had shared skin-lightening creams made in Mexico. Twelve people in California and 10 in Virginia had mercury in their bloodstream; the highest levels were among women who typically used the cream at least twice a day.”

The highest mercury levels were found in the woman, with 100 times the safe level and her four-year-old daughter with 25 times the safe level.   The CDC found that mercury poisoning symptoms are: numbness, tingling, dizziness, forgetfulness, headaches, and depression.  It can also affect the body’s nervous system and kidneys.

Read more here.

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