Have You Been Injured By Lead Poisoning?

Lead poisoning occurs when lead builds up in the body, usually over a long period of time. It can be difficult to decipher lead poison problems because many older homes and buildings have lead-based paint. Lead exposure affects nearly half a million children living in the U.S.. causing problems with concentration, thinking, and learning. In addition, lead can be in the air, soil, and water. Adults who work on home renovations, auto repair shops, or with batteries may also be exposed to lead.

Lead occurs naturally in the earth’s crust, but man has caused it to spread. This has happened because of mining, burning fossil fuels, and manufacturing. Lead was a key ingredient in paint until it was banned in 1978. It was banned for use in gasoline in the late 1980s.

Another common source of lead is in lead pipes, brass plumbing fixtures, and copper pipes. This can lead to lead particles being released into tap water. Lead solder in food cans is prohibited in the U.S., but it is still prevalent in some countries. Some traditional remedies contain lead, as well as traditional cosmetics. In 2012, the U.S. increased the permitted amount of lead in blood tests for children. Some believe that this puts children at risk, but overall, the number of children with lead poisoning is still reduced.

There are some indications that you or a loved one may have lead poisoning. The symptoms for children include irritability, weight loss, abdominal pain, learning difficulties, loss of appetite, sluggishness, fatigue, vomiting, and constipation. Newborns exposed to lead before birth may have slowed growth and learning difficulties. Symptoms in adults are quite different. They include muscular weakness, high blood pressure, decline in mental function, headache, miscarriage or premature birth, abdominal pain, mood disorders, memory loss, pain, numbness or tingling of extremities.

You can prevent lead poisoning by washing your hands, cleaning dusty surfaces, and running cold tap water through older water lines before using the water. Don’t remove lead paint by sanding as this will cause small lead particles to accumulate. Don’t remove old paint with an open-flame torch. If lead paint is sealed well on a wall or trim, you can paint over it.

If you suspect that you or a loved one has been affected by lead poisoning in Arizona, you need to see a doctor. A simple test will determine blood lead levels. Children between the ages of 1 and 2 are required to be tested for lead poisoning.

 

Sources:

http://www.dhhs.state.nh.us/dphs/bchs/clpp/index.htm
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/lead-poisoning/FL00068/METHOD=print
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/lead-poisoning-rates-rise-in-us-after-cdc-lowers-blood-cutoff/