Lead poisoning is the result of a buildup of lead in the body over the course of time.
Exposure to lead can occur by contaminated air, water, dust, soil, food, or consumer products. While lead is a naturally occuring metal, human activity such as mining, burning fossil fuels, and manufacturing has released lead into the environment. Lead particles can contaminate tap water through lead pipes, brass plumbing fixtures, and copper pipes in residential and commercial properies (including schools). For many years, lead was used in paint, furniture, and even children's toys. Although lead-based paint has been banned in homes, household furniture, and children's toys since 1978, it still remains on walls in older homes and apartments, and on old furniture or toys sold at flea markets, second-hand stores and garage sales. Children are particularly susceptible to poisoning by ingesting tiny paint chips or inhaling toxic dust on toys and objects they put in their mouth. Lead can also be ingested from foods grown in contaminated soil, lead-soldered cans, glazed ceramic dishes, and crystal. Additionally, lead can be found in imported candy. Adults in the auto repair or home improvement industries can be exposed to toxic levels of lead in the workplace.
Lead poisoning can be hard to detect and symptoms do not often present themselves until dangerous levels have accumulated in the body. The brain is the most sensitive to this and some of the effects are permanent. Symptoms include abdominal pain, constipation, headaches, sluggishness, fatigue, irritability, infertility, tingling in hands and feet, intellectual disability, developmental delays, memory problems, learning difficulties, and behavioral problems. In severe cases anemia, seizures, coma, or death can occur.
If you believe that you or your child has been exposed to lead, call Nobles & DeCarolis today (585) 546-1260.
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