What is lead and why is it dangerous?
Lead is a metal that was routinely used in paint, varnish, plumbing, ceramics, and other household items until 1978. Lead can also be found in dust hobbies or jobs, including welding, making stain glass windows, and ammunition re loading.
As lead paint ages it typically peels, flakes, or turns into dust. Children will then breathe in the dust, or ingest the chips that fall from the walls. This then leads to neuro/developmental issues, especially with behavior, learning, and attention.
Who is most at risk for lead?
Children absorb 4-5x the amount of lead than the average adult. This is because children have strong tendencies to put everything in their mouths (windowsills with lead paint/varnish, items that fall on the floor, etc.). Their metabolism is much quicker than that of adults. They also do not consume as much of the foods that help block lead absorption.
What do I do if my home may have lead?
Do not do renovations with children in the home.
Do not vacuum or sweep these areas as it will disperse the dust.
Shower and change clothes prior to child contact if your work or hobby contains lead.
Place barriers over the area- clear paint, duct tape, or cardboard.
Damp dust areas of known lead paint.
Frequently wash your child’s toys, hands, and other items they may put in their mouth.
Find a contractor that is certified in lead abatement to properly remove the lead hazards.
Eating foods rich in Iron, Calcium, and vitamin c will help block absorption of lead.
How do I know if my child has lead poisoning?
It is crucial that everyone get their child tested for lead at one year of age, especially if the home was built before 1978.
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To report a public health emergency or communicable disease after hours, please contact Clark County Dispatch at (715) 743-3157.