- Lead is particularly dangerous to children under age six because their growing bodies absorb more lead than adults do, and their brains and nervous systems are more sensitive to the damaging effects of lead. Babies and toddlers tend to put everything in their mouths, which means a higher risk of exposure even to small amounts. Little ones may swallow or inhale dust containing lead from their hands, toys, food, and other objects.
- A pregnant woman’s exposure to lead is of particular concern because if she is at risk, it can cause miscarriages, premature births, low birth weight and brain damage. Both adult men and women may also breath lead dust by spending time in areas where lead-based paint is deteriorating, and during renovation or repair work that disturbs painted surfaces in older homes and buildings.
How do you know if you are experiencing the negative health effects of lead? Some symptoms in adults include high blood pressure, fertility problems, loss of sex drive, digestive problems, nerve disorders, memory and concentration problems, muscle or joint pain.
Lead paint is still present in millions of homes, sometimes under layers of newer paint. If the paint is in good shape, the lead paint is usually not a problem. But to be on the safe side and to help determine if your family is being exposed unnecessarily:
- Regularly check your home for chipping, peeling, or deteriorating paint, and address issues promptly without excessive sanding. If you must sand, sand the minimum area needed, wet the area first, and clean up thoroughly.
- Regularly check all painted areas that rub together or get lots of wear, like windows, doors, and stairways, for any signs of deterioration.
- Regularly check for paint chips or dust – if you see some, remove carefully with a damp paper towel and discard in the trash, then wipe the surface clean with a wet paper towel.
- Wipe down flat surfaces, like window sills, at least weekly with a damp paper towel and throw away the paper towel.
- Mop smooth floors (using a damp mop) weekly to control dust.
Remodeling or renovating your home is not only an ideal way to increase its value and make your living space more enjoyable and useful, it is also a way to remove the potential health risks that lead-based paint can present. Have qualified professionals do the work. There are standards in place to ensure the work is done safely, reliably, and effectively, while at the same time reducing the likelihood of contaminating your home with lead-based paint dust during the process.
Want a FREE quote on painting for your home or business in Monmouth, Independence, Dallas, and the greater Salem, Oregon area? Call Jack at 503-838-1714 today!