Even though steps have been taken to remove lead from products like paint, ceramics and plumbing materials, lead can still enter our environment. Learn to identify problem areas and keep your family safe.
Any home built before 1978 may have materials that contain lead. If you are considering a remodeling project, it would be wise to test several areas of the home to determine if lead is present. A professional company will get you the most accurate result, but test kits are available. If lead is present, consider hiring a service to remove the affected areas. If you proceed with remodeling, take precautions to keep dust at a minimum. Wear gear that covers your mouth, nose and eyes and employ an air purifier or vacuum with a HEPA filter.
Paint is the most common source of lead in an older home, but you may find it in your plumbing, as lead was used to line many materials prior to 1986. Your local township can test your home’s water and alert you to potential problems.
Lead is also sneaking into items like beads, cosmetics and spices from countries that have fewer regulations in manufacturing. Be cautious when purchasing items internationally. Always buy things from reputable businesses.
Children under the age of 3 are more susceptible to lead exposure since they are constantly putting their fingers in their mouths. Once lead enters into their digestive system, harmful levels can become present rather quickly. Lead poisoning symptoms can mask the common cold or flu. You may notice loss of appetite, fatigue, weight loss, constipation, or vomiting. If you feel your child has been exposed, see your doctor right away. When detected, most treatments can eliminate lead from the body quickly.
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