Lead Based Paint
What is Lead Poisoning?
Lead poisoning means having high concentrations of lead in the blood of your body. Lead can:
- Cause major health problems, especially in young children
- Damage the brain, nervous system, kidneys, hearing, and coordination.
- Cause behavioral problems, blindness, even death
- Cause problems in pregnancy and affect a baby’s development
Who is Most at Risk?
Anyone can get lead poisoning, but women who are pregnant and children under the age of 6 are at the greatest risk. The risk is greater for children who:
- Live in an older home (built before 1978, and even more so before 1960)
- Frequent homes, childcare facility, including preschools and kindergarten classrooms, built before 1978,
- Do not get enough iron or calcium in their diet
- Live with family members who work in lead-related job
Where Does it Come From?
The lead hazards that children most often touch or ingest:
- Lead dust
- Lead in the soil
- Loose paint chips
- Chewable surfaces containing lead-based paint.
A child may also put toys, pacifiers, or hands into their mouth which may have come in contact with lead dust or soil.
What Can I Do About It?
Your child should be first tested for the presence of lead in the blood between six months and one year of age. You can ask your doctor or clinic to perform this test during a regular checkup. Even small amounts of lead in the blood can affect your child’s learning abilities even when no other symptoms exist, so it is important to test your child as often as your child’s doctor recommends it.
Do not attempt to get rid of lead-based paint yourself, as this could further endanger you and your family. If your home was built before 1978 and you have a child under the age of 6 call 254-750-5656 to begin the application process for the Home Rehabilitation program or contact a company that specializes in lead-based paint abatement.