What is Lead poisoning?

How do children become lead poisoned?

  • Lead poisoning is usually caused by lead paint found in homes built before 1978. Many of the homes in Scott County were built before 1978.
  • The most common method of poisoning is ingestion (eating):
    • lead paint chips
    • Dusty or dirty hands, toys, bottles, or pacifiers
    • Chewing surfaces with lead paint
    • Playing in dirt or sandboxes near an old building or where an old building was torn down
  • The second most common method of poisoning is inhalation (breathing in):
    • Breathing in dust from lead paint that is being sanded, scraped, or removed with a heath gun

Potential Harm

There are no known safe levels of lead in the body

What Does a Lead Poisoned Child look like?

Symptoms of Lead Poisoning in Children

  • Low level poisoning examples:
    • hyperactivity
    • low impulse control
    • biting/hitting/throwing
    • trouble hearing
    • smaller than other kids of similar age
  • High level poisoning examples:
    • All low level poisoning examples
    • difficulty keeping up with other kids
    • uncoordinated
    • violent

Lead Testing

  • It is recommended that children be tested every year up until age 6
  • There are two methods of testing Blood Lead Levels:
    • Capillary draw (finger prick) – this method uses very little blood and is fast. Though quick, if lead is detected, a venous draw will then need to be taken to confirm elevated levels
    • Venous draw (blood draw) – This is the preferred method of testing Blood Lead Levels as it requires only one draw.