Millions of homes in the US still contain lead paint. Why does this matter? Because not only is lead paint a danger to children, it is dangerous to pregnant women as well, threatening the health and safety of a child in utero. There’s no such thing as a safe level of lead in the home.
Older Homes at Risk
Homes built in the 1970s may contain lead paint, posing a threat to you and your family. Not only is lead common in paint in homes built before 1978 but the soldering found on pipes also often contains lead. You can find out when your home was built, even if it is a rental, by searching the title with the county you reside in. The year a house was built is a matter of public record, so you can find out for free.
Hazardous to Your Health
Lead is a threat to any human who is exposed, including both adults and children. A high level of lead exposure over short periods of time can cause abdominal pain, constipation, fatigue, headache, irritability, loss of appetite, memory loss, weakness and pain or tingling in the hands and/or feet. Longer exposure can lead to kidney damage, brain damage, physical weakness and even death. Since lead can cross through the placental barrier, it can cause nerve damage in an unborn child and even result in miscarriage. It has been proven that lead can infertility in both men and women. Additionally, lead exposure in developing children can have an effect on their ability to learn, causing ADHD and developmental disabilities. Lead presence in your home is a serious matter. However, many don’t even realize that the risk is there for their entire family.
Fixing the Problem
In order to remove lead-based paint, you should never sand or scrape it without wetting it first. Make sure the area is well-ventilated, lay down plastic and wet the paint prior to sanding or scraping. This prevents particles from entering the air within the home. After removing the paint, be sure to wipe down all surfaces with soapy water. Additionally, wash your clothing immediately and immediately shower, using a lot of soap.
When you are ready to paint your home again, be sure you are buying paint that is from a store and/or that it is lead-free. Lead-based paint has been banned for use in homes since 1978, but road and parking lot paint sometimes contain lead. If someone gives you paint and/or the paint is in an unsealed container, be aware that there is no guarantee that the paint is lead-free. Protect yourself and your family and be in the know.
If you are repainting your home, we have all the tools to do the job right!