Exposure to lead paint (lead-based paint), which was widely used in many homes and apartments before 1976, can damage the body's organ systems, especially the brain, nervous system, kidneys, and blood.
Small children often like to chew on objects. These objects may have lead paint. When crushed or broken down, lead paint may contaminate dust and dirt in the surroundings. Children who live and play in these areas may absorb or ingest lead in harmful amounts. This increases their risk for learning disabilities, behaviour disorders, slowed growth, and impaired hearing. Some toys and jewellery made in other countries have been found to contain lead paint.
In adults, lead poisoning can cause serious health problems, including high blood pressure and damage to the brain, nervous system, stomach, and kidneys.
A blood test can measure the amount of lead in the blood. This test can be done for people who are concerned about their exposure to lead or who show signs of lead poisoning.
Current as of: September 20, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & John Pope MD - Pediatrics & Brian D. O'Brien MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & R. Steven Tharratt MD, MPVM, FACP, FCCP - Pulmonology, Critical Care Medicine, Medical Toxicology