Keeping Kids Safe From Lead Hazards
Most Western New Yorkers think the threat of lead poisoning is a thing of the past. Unfortunately, Buffalo ranks among the top 10 cities nationally for elevated blood lead levels in young children. Exposure to lead can permanently harm children under age 6 through hazards in soil, water, and lead-based paint in older homes. Fortunately, lead poisoning is 100% preventable, and you can help!
It’s time for all of us—each parent, caregiver, landlord, and homeowner—to help make our community lead safe.
About Lead Poisoning
Lead is a naturally occurring metal that can cause negative health effects. In general, the older your home, the more likely it is to have lead hazards. Since 90% of Buffalo’s housing was built before 1978 (when lead in paint was banned), there is a very high chance that your house contains lead. People are exposed to lead by eating lead paint chips, eating or drinking contaminated food or water, and by breathing in lead dust.
Children younger than 6 years old are more likely to swallow or breathe in lead dust because they put objects, such as toys, in their mouth. Even small amounts of dust, as little as a sugar packet’s worth, can cause serious and permanent health problems, such as learning disabilities, attention deficit disorder, speech and language problems, behavioral problems, and neurological damage. That’s why it’s important to get your child tested for lead at age one and two.
Lead Poisoning is 100% Preventable
While lead poisoning seems scary, it Is 100% preventable. Learn more about the simple ways you can protect your child from the dangers of lead.