What are some of the sources of lead?

Lead is found in many places which may include: lead based pant, soil, children’s jewelry and charms, toys, lead soldered piping, cultural sources such as home remedies or candies, glazes or pottery or dishware, or lead dust from parent’s workplaces, and hobbies. According to the State of California, nearly half of all investigated lead poisoning cases have been linked to recent remodeling or repainting activities. Lead-based paint was often used in homes that were build prior to 1978.

How do I know if my child’s toys or jewelry have lead and where can I find a list of product recalls?

Some toys and toy jewelry have been found to contain levels of lead that can pose a serious health risk to children. Unfortunately, the level of lead in toys and jewelry is not currently regulated. Parents should carefully check their child’s toys and jewelry to see if their child has any toys recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Click here to find current recalls due to lead.

What is primary prevention? How is it different from the historical approach to lead poisoning and other housing-related health problems?

In the past, government agencies and health care practitioners addresses lead hazards, excessive moisture, and other substandard housing conditions only after someone became sick. Primary prevention rejects that approach and directs agencies, community based organizations, and property owners to assess conditions in homes proactively; identify hazards where they exist; and require repairs before anyone becomes sick. RFTE believes that a primary prevention approach is the most effective way to maintain a healthy environment and improve the health of all Americans.

Is Asthma related to housing conditions?

YES. While no one completely understands what causes asthma, various substances and conditions are known to lead to asthma symptoms, commonly called asthma attacks. These substances and conditions, known as triggers, can be directly related to conditions in one’s home. Common housing related asthma triggers include dust mites, pet dander, rodent infestation, cockroach infestation, environmental tobacco smoke, excessive moisture, mold, home temperatures that are either too hot or too cold, and indoor pesticide use.

What is the impact of asthma on society?

In all, asthma costs our nation at least $16 billion every year. Asthma related work productivity losses alone cost America employers $1.7 billion annually and the disease in the number one cause of school absences from chronic disease. Through its efforts both at the national and local levels, RFTE is committed to helping families minimize asthma triggers in their homes, allowing them to lead healthier lives and reducing health care costs to both individual households and all of society.

When it comes to harmful environmental exposures, children cannot be considered “little adults.” Their bodies take in proportionately greater amounts of environmental toxins than adults. Their rapis development makes them more vulnerable to environmental interference, and their normal behavior pattern place them at great risk to many toxins.

Why are Children More at Risk?

Children can be exposed to environmental toxins even before birth in the mother is exposed during pregnancy to toxins that can cross the placenta, such as carbon monoxide or lead. Childrens organs including the brain, lungs, and reproductive systems, begin developing during the fetal stage and continue through adolescence. Organ growth occurs in spurts, and it is during key growth periods that organ systems are most vulnerable to permanent damage. The Environmental Protection Agency recently acknowledged that enhanced risk to children from environmental exposures when it released draft supplemental guidelines for assessing cancer risk from early-life exposure to carcinogens.

Lead Poisoning can cause:

• Learning Disabilities
• Violent Behavior
• Speech and Hearing Delay
• Severe Cognitive Disabilities
• Coma
• Death

The effects of lead poisoning
are life long and irreversible.