Lead poisoning is typically caused by chipping or peeling lead-based paint. Lead-based paint was used in homes built before 1978. Because many homes in Iowa were built before 1960, the dust in many Iowa homes contains lead. Young children are especially at risk of lead poisoning because they get dust on their hands, fingers, toys, and food, and then put those items in their mouths.
Although you cannot tell if a child has lead poisoning by looking at him or her, elevated blood lead levels can cause learning disabilities. All children ages one to five should be tested for lead poisoning each year.
Mills County Public Health provides lead testing for children ages 1 through 5, along with lead poisoning prevention education. Case management is also provided for individuals with abnormal lead levels.
For more information call 712-527-9699 and ask for Valerie Ramsey, RN, Maternal-Child Health Nurse; Lead Poisoning Prevention Coordinator, or email Valerie here.