Sunday, August 28, 2011

Tips to Prevent Lead Exposure in Children

Exposure to lead can cause serious problems for developing children. Here are a few useful tips for avoiding lead exposure:

1. Keep away from peeling paint.  Designate places for your child to play that are free of peeling paint. Lead-based paint can crack, peel and crumble into dust that may be ingested by children while eating or breathing.

2.  Avoid dust.  Lead from soil or deteriorating lead-based paint can be found in dust and dirt.  Shoes should be left at the door and regularly wet-wipe floors and dusty surfaces to keep lead out of the house.

3.  Wash hands before eating. Leaded dust can be transferred from children’s hands to their mouths. Hands should be washed with soap and warm water frequently—especially before eating—for at least 20 seconds.

4.  Check your child’s toys, which are often put in their mouths. Look at the toys to see if they are dusty or have any chipped or damaged areas.  You can also visit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to learn about toy recalls, including recalls related to lead prevention.

Source: Lead Away!, a national education initiative developed by UnitedHealthcare and Sesame Workshop. For more information, please visit

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