Why is it Hazardous?
Lead is a heavy metal commonly used in construction, batteries, electronic components, bullets, and radiation shielding. Like other heavy metals, it is a neurotoxin, meaning that it negatively affects the nervous system.
Frequent exposure to can cause it to accumulate in the body and may cause poisoning. Children are more susceptible to exposure and toxic effects can reduce their cognitive abilities. Anemia is also a condition caused by lead poisoning, since the metal interferes with hemoglobin production in the body.
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Where Can it be Found?
• Drinking water
• Cosmetics (lipstick, kohl - a type of mascara)
• Window sills
• Ceramic ware (dishes, mugs, china)
• Contaminated soil
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• 80% of toys are made in China, where most recalled products have been produced. These includes major brands such as Mattel and Hasbro.
• 40% of US households contain lead paint.
• Use of the metal in home construction was not regulated prior to 1978.