Human Nutrition, Diet and Health > HNDH Blog > Posts > National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is October 20 through October 26, 2013

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The presence of lead in the home has an impact on the health of everyone in the home. The impact of lead exposure can be found in almost every organ and system in your body. Children six years old and younger are most susceptible to the effects of lead. For 2013, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley has proclaimed October 20 to 26 National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week.

Lead in the blood of children can result in:

  • Permanent damage to the brain and nervous system, leading to behavior and learning problems, lower IQ, and hearing problems
  • Slowed growth
  • Anemia

Keeping your home clean and well-maintained goes a long way in preventing lead exposure. Use the EPA's Lead Poisoning Home Checklist as a start.(

The 5 Questions on the checklist include:

  • Was your home built before 1978?
  • Do you see walls, furniture, or window sills in your home with chipping or peeling  paint?
  • Do your children play in lead-contaminated soil near your home?
  • Do you store food in imported pottery that contains lead?
  • Do you work with lead in your job?

For information about lead visit the Environmental Protection Agency's Lead Portal - you can find more information for your family and your community - or contact your local Alabama Health Department, they may have more local information about lead issues in your community.

Colorado Extension has a publication "Lead-Based Paint in Homes" that provides an overview and action steps. Visit the Healthy Homes Partnership for more extension-based resources on lead 

Get your home tested. Get your child tested. Get the facts.

Submitted by Donna Shanklin, Regional Extension Agent - Human Nutrition, Diet & Health,, 256-737-9386

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