The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has recently issued a warning urging parents around the country to get their children tested for lead poisoning. Lead poisoning occurs when unsafe levels of lead build up in the body. Children under the age of six are especially prone to the negative health effects of even small amounts of lead exposure. There are an estimated four million homes in which children are exposed to lead. New standards are being issued stating that children should primarily be tested in their first two years and then checked at least once a year until they are six years old.
So what's the main cause of this lead exposure? Experts say that children who live in homes built before 1978 are most at risk, because lead paint was commonly and heavily used in construction during this time. Many parents wonder if, aside from testing, if they can even know whether or not their children have been affected by lead poisoning. One of the key symptoms to look for is attention problems. This may be difficult to detect, considering the fact that most children have trouble focusing, however, this combined with a lower IQ and living in a home built before 1978 is a cause for concern.
Children may also display loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea and other learning disabilities. Young children not only absorb lead more easily, their immune systems are more prone to being harmed by the presence of lead. If your child is suffering from brain development complications because of their exposure to lead, you as a parent can take action. First, take your child to get a blood test. If they test to have levels over five micrograms per deciliter of blood then it may be determined that your child has lead poisoning. At this point, you may be able to take legal action.