lead poisonContrary to popular belief, lead poisoning doesn’t just occur in run down urban areas, nor is it a thing of the past. It can occur even in the most upscale neighborhoods, and among all economic groups. And the symptoms of lead poisoning can be devastating.

Lead poisoning is a very serious condition that can produce irreversible damage in adults, children, and even pets. So, it’s important that you find out its causes and symptoms so you can take the appropriate steps to prevent or mitigate the terrible effects of lead poisoning. It doesn’t take much – a speck of lead dust as small as a grain of sand can lead to unsafe lead poisoning levels.

Lead Poisoning Symptoms and Effects

People who appear healthy may have elevated blood lead levels, which can lead to big problems. Lead poisoning can cause serious, irreversible damage, including: brain damage, ADD and ADHD, aggressive behavior and tendencies for violence, damage to the nervous system, impaired growth, and in extreme cases, coma or even death. (For specifics, click here.)

How To Prevent Lead Poisoning

(a) Lead poisoning can be diagnosed with a simple blood lead test. Depending on the state in which you live, some pediatricians will conduct a lead screening for children under the age of three. But most of the time, the test is left at the discretion of the pediatrician. If you have any concerns, discuss testing for lead poisoning with your physician.

(b) You also should consider a lead inspection of your home by a certified, licensed testing company. Better to be safe than sorry.

How to spot the signs of lead poisoning

Lead poisoning symptoms in children include:

  • Irritability;
  • Learning difficulties;
  • Weight loss and loss of appetite;
  • Abdominal pain;
  • Constipation;
  • Vomiting;
  • Headaches;
  • Sluggishness and fatigue;
  • Seizures.

Symptoms of lead poisoning in adults include:

  • Pain, numbness and/or tingling of the extremities;
  • Headaches;
  • Muscle and joint pain;
  • Memory loss;
  • High blood pressure;
  • Abdominal pain;
  • Constipation;
  • Decline in mental acuity;
  • Reduced sperm count, abnormal sperm;
  • Mood disorders.

Lead poisoning is especially devastating for pregnant women and their unborn children. It can cause:

  • Miscarriage;
  • Premature birth;
  • Low birth weight;
  • Brain damage;
  • Decreased mental acuity;
  • Learning difficulties;
  • Stunted growth.

Even pets are not immune. Symptoms of lead poisoning in pets can include:

  • Lack of appetite;
  • Vomiting;
  • Abdominal pain;
  • Constipation then diarrhea;
  • Chomping of jaws;
  • Blindness;
  • Seizures;
  • Muscle spasms;
  • Behavioral changes;
  • Obsessive circling.

If the source of the lead is not determined and removed, the poisoning will continue. Before you risk exposing your family to lead, find out if a hazard exists. Hire a professional lead-testing service because home test kits are not always accurate, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Call us at 1-800-392-6468 to schedule a lead inspection.

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