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Question of the Week: What do you do to protect your children from lead poisoning?

2009 October 19

Childhood lead poisoning is a major environmental health problem in the United States. Lead poisoning can cause learning disabilities, nervous system damage, kidney damage, and decreased intelligence.  National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is October 18-24.

What do you do to protect your children from lead poisoning?

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Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

14 Responses leave one →
  1. Ken Beets permalink
    October 19, 2009

    We have a system at our house that takes the lead and irons
    out of the water. theis web is http://www.aquamaker.com

  2. Rose Hammond permalink
    October 19, 2009

    EPA has a booklet available free at 1-800 LEADFYI. Also parents should get their children tested at the local health department at least once a year if they live in a house built prior ro 1978 or exposed to lead in other ways. If you want a booklet and can contact a Realtor, they can get you a booklet through the National Assocaiton of Realtors. No house listed which was built prior to 1978 should be shown to any potential buyer without disclosing possible lead based paint hazards.

  3. Mike permalink
    October 19, 2009

    On my bike ride to work each day, I keep an eye out for lead wheel weights that have fallen off cars and onto the road. I have a full cup of them now in my office, and not sure how to dispose of them, but better here than out on the roads. Lead is a soft metal, so these things get pretty chewed up, and I imagine the shavings disperse in the stormwater system, not to mention they would be acutely toxic if kids put them in their mouth.
    My biggest competitors for picking up lead weights are the street sweepers which come through Washington DC every 2 weeks. I’ve often wondered if they separate the lead weights from the rest of the trash, and how they dispose of the lead.

  4. Jackenson Durand permalink
    October 19, 2009

    The best case scenario would be a good vigilance of our children life environmental area exposure in daily basis. In the Medical Assisting Program we using this below equation to better reduce people health exposure.
    Sanitizing, disinfecting and sterilizing if necessary.

  5. Melanie permalink
    October 19, 2009

    Even if you live in an older home that has lead-based paint you can keep your children safe. I have lived in a home built in 1952 and a home built in 1972 both with lead. First, don’t allow your children to chew on window sills and such that are covered with this type of paint. Don’t do remodeling or demolition with your children in the home and don’t allow them there until you have thoroughly addressed the debris. If you find chipped or peeling paint, deal with the issue then. Don’t let it get to the point where your kids are eating the flakes.

    A little common sense goes a long way.

  6. Jimmy permalink
    October 19, 2009

    I make sure that any repairs done to my plumbing is done without using lead. All of our public water supplies are subject to lead. In most of the older cities lead and asbestos piping is still in use. Makes you want to drink “spring water.”

  7. armansyahardanis permalink
    October 19, 2009

    I am very closed with my kid, since they were born. I have two children , boy and girl. Substantially, a different sex will be make a families are friendly and strongly. I didn’t know and didn’t care about poisoning. All our lived always clear and clean. Now, I am thinking that destiny will be eliminate our scared.

  8. Anonymous permalink
    October 20, 2009

    Huh?

  9. Michael E. Bailey permalink
    October 21, 2009

    I grew up at a time when lead based paint was the norm for interior and exterior paint. The house my mother and I had for 47 years needed exterior painting done every so many years so the exterior paint that was lead based was removed and replaced with non-lead paint. But the interior paint lasted alot longer and didn,t get replaced until after it started peeling. So we had the house over 30 years before the old lead paint on the inside was taken off and replaced with lead free paint. To protect children, if you think you have lead based paint, don’t wait until it starts peeling to get rid of it and use a painting contractor trained in dealing with prevention of lead paint contamination. Best wishes, Michael E. Bailey.

  10. Charles permalink
    October 21, 2009

    Good points… its scary to think that municipalities might be sweeping up wheel weights and dumping them into landfills. What ARE they doing???

  11. Graham permalink
    October 23, 2009

    What work is being conducted regarding the inevatable exposure from mercury to chidren from the breakage of compact fluorescent bulbs, We have estimated that ONE of these bulbs has 400 times the W.H.O permisable levels of mercury in it!

  12. Han permalink
    October 23, 2009

    This is the first time i visit this site. i’m vary interested with this kind of question. fistly, although i’m not an American, but my major is environmental science, and i’m still a student-

    Most of parents in my country, dono too much mesures to avoid lead problems. Most of them even never heard of the serious problem.Even if they heard, they just shocked at that moment, but soon forgot the problem. and thinking’ the problem is far away from us” We often take the measures after our children suffer from the lead problem. But it was too late for them.

    I read the origen of the lead, but in fact, i still have no idea about how to make other people to understand the problem or just let them do the basic prevent measure. Deep down ,even i myself know nothing more than going to c a doctor after the children have a real lead problem. So i’m also asking for the help.How to prevent the problem.- Thanks a lot.

  13. Giorgio permalink
    October 27, 2009

    I TEACH THEM NOT TO EAT PAINT! Problem solved.

  14. sara permalink
    November 18, 2009

    The most effective way is to test toys as they come into your house, especially around high-toy holidays, like birthdays and Christmas. Test other products as you buy them. Return to the store if lead is present. If there is a problem, it will show up on the test. Some measures can be taken to reduce lead levels to some degree, but can’t completely clear up the problems associated with poisoning.

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