Lead is a very strong poison. Lead poisoning is a dangerous condition. It occurs when lead raises in your body.
Lead is located in lead-based paints and is also found in:
- Art supplies
- Contaminated dust
- Gasoline products sold outside of the US and Canada
Lead poisoning usually stays over months or years. Also, it can cause severe mental and physical impairment. Young children are more likely to have lead poisoning.
Children usually get lead in their bodies by putting lead-containing things in their mouths. Touching the lead and then putting it in their mouths can also poison them. Lead is most harmful to children because their brains and nervous systems are in developing condition.
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Early signs of lead poisoning include
Symptoms of lead poisoning are various and can affect many parts of the body. Lead poisoning builds up slowly.
Lead toxicity is rare after ingestion of lead.
Signs of lead poisoning include:
- Abdominal pain
- Abdominal cramps
- Aggressive behavior
- Sleep problems
- Loss of developmental skills in children
- Loss of appetite
- High blood pressure
- Numbness or tingling in the extremities
- Memory loss
- Kidney dysfunction
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Since a child’s brain is in a growing stage, lead can lead to intellectual disability. Symptoms in children may include:
- Behavioral disorder
- Low IQ level
- Poor grades at school
- Problems in hearing
- Short- and long-term learning difficulties
- Growth deferments
A high, poisonous dose of lead poisoning may result in the following:
- Severe abdominal pain and cramping
- Muscle weakness
- Stumbling when walking
Causes of lead poisoning
Lead poisoning occurs when the lead is ingested. Also, breathing in dust that contains lead can cause it. However, you cannot smell or taste lead, and it’s not visible to the naked eye.
Common sources of lead include:
- House paint
- Toys and household items
- Bullets, curtain weights, and fishing sinkers
- Pipes and sink faucets
- Soil polluted by car or chipping house paint
- Paint sets and art supplies
- Jewelry, pottery, and lead figures
- Storage batteries
- Kohl or kajal eyeliners
- Some traditional ethnic medicines
Long term effects of lead poisoning
Lead poisoning also causes long-term harm in adults, such as an increased risk of high blood pressure and kidney damage.
In addition, exposure of pregnant women to high lead levels can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth, and low birth weight.
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How to treat lead poisoning?
The first thing is to identify and remove the source of the lead poison.
If removing the source does not reduce levels of poisoning, the following may be necessary:
- Chelation therapy involves medication that binds with the lead and allows it to be passed through urine or feces.
If someone has eaten an extreme amount of lead in a single dose, then the person might need the following treatments.
- Bowel irrigation: Flushing out the whole gastrointestinal tract through a large amount of polyethylene glycol solution
- Gastric lavage: Gastric suction or stomach pumping involves washing the stomach through a tube and saline irrigation inserted into the throat.
Does lead poisoning go away?
The damage lead causes cannot reverse, but various medical treatments are available to reduce the amount of lead in the body.
The most common treatment of lead poisoning is chelation (a patient ingests a chemical that binds to lead, enabling it from the body).
Measures that might help reduce the risk of lead poisoning include:
- Prevent children from playing in the soil.
- Follow a healthful diet that is rich in calcium and iron can help lower lead absorption.
- Install an effective water filtering device or switch to bottled water.
- Wash children’s hands regularly to reduce the risk of lead from soil and dust.
- Keep the environment dust-free as much as possible.
- Avoid storing wine, vinegar-based dressings, or spirits in lead crystal decanters for long periods, as lead can leach into the liquid.
- Avoid imported canned foods.
Adults who have experienced minor lead poisoning may recover completely. However, as children are still developing, they may not fully recover. As a result, there may be permanent low IQ and attention deficits.
Other body systems, like kidneys and nerves, might also get damaged permanently. Depending on the severity, recovery can take months or years.
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