The hazards of lead paint are making national headlines after the disaster in Flint, Michigan, which has exposed a much greater lead poisoning epidemic in the United States. You may be concerned, but not know where to start to protect your children and family from lead poisoning. The easiest answer is start at home.
If your home or apartment was built before 1978, the year the use of lead paint was banned, chances are lead-based paint is present. That means, if the paint layers are sanded or chipped, lead dust will result. This infographic shows some of the hot spots for lead in the home.
Lead-based paint is usually found around doors and windows, and on railings, decks, stairs, banisters, fences, and porches. By simply opening and closing a window harboring lead-based paint, lead dust can be released, and that can cause irreparable damage to anyone (including pets) breathing it in.
This explains why outdoors, lead dust is found in soil, sandboxes, on sidewalks, porch floors, swing sets, outdoor toys, and even athletic fields. Easily tracked indoors, lead dust can coat floors, furniture, blankets, toys and hands, and eventually wind up in a child’s mouth.