Lead is a toxic substance that may be present in dust, paint, soil, and drinking water. When ingested or inhaled as dust, lead poses a serious health risk to young children. Low levels of lead exposure can cause nervous system and kidney damage, learning disabilities, poor muscle coordination, slower growth, hearing losses, and also speech, language, and behavior problems. While low level exposure is most common, exposure to high levels can have devastating effects including seizures, consciousness, and even death.
Who is at risk?
Any child may be at risk for lead poisoning; however, children under the age of six are at greatest risk for lead poisoning due to their frequent hand-to-mouth behavior and rapid development. Lead poisoning can occur regardless of financial, social-economical or cultural status.