effects of lead


Lead exposure has become a major health concern worldwide. Lead is a cumulative poison, and exposure can affect nearly every system in the body. Children under 6 and pregnant women are the most susceptible to the negative health effects of lead exposure.

Children with high levels of lead in their bodies can suffer from:

  •  Damage to the brain and nervous system
  • Behavior and learning problems, such as hyperactivity
  • Slowed growth
  • Hearing problems
  • Headaches

Lead was previously believed to be a serious threat only when it caused physical damage. But now lead is recognized as a toxin for which there is no safe level, especially when it comes to small children. Even low concentrations in a child’s blood have been found to cause Attention Deficit Disorder, reduced IQ and anti-social behavior.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has done extensive research on the sources and effects of lead exposure and lead poisoning, and published a study on Childhood Lead Poisoning.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has started the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, which aims to eliminate blood lead levels greater than 10 μg/dL in children.

The Lead Group, Inc. in Australia has published many articles regarding lead and lead safety, including Health Impacts of Lead Poisoning and a Childhood Lead Poisoning Risk Factor Questionnaire.


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