There is a high likelihood that anyone who lives in and owns their own home has at some point done some home renovation and redecorating that involved painting either the interior or exterior (or both) walls of their house.
Each year, many people redecorate their home and decide to change the color of their walls. Many people even call upon professionals like us to help them. Painting homes can be a lot of fun (and a lot of work!); however, certain types of paint, like paint that contains lead, can be extremely dangerous to one’s health.
For the purposes of this article, we’ll focus on the dangers as well as frequently asked questions associated with using lead based paint.
Lead is a metal that has been found to be extremely poisonous. It may be hard to believe then, that years ago, household plumbing pipe work that supplied homes with water, actually used lead piping to transport the water to people’s homes, rather than the standard copper pipes that plumbers use today.
Why People Use Lead Paint: Companies added lead to paint before they knew just how dangerous it was. Lead helps the paint dry quicker, as well as improves how durable it is. It also helps the paint resist dampness and moisture. Using lead in paint has now been banned in many countries, but alarmingly, still not all.
Dangers of Lead in Paint: Houses that have been painted using lead based paint are obviously at the most risk. Lead is so toxic that ingesting even a small amount can be very dangerous, and can result in lead poisoning.
Lead poisoning is a medical condition that gradually affects the body over time. It can interfere with the major organs, as well as
some of the body’s more basic functions. For symptoms, please consult your physician.
How Lead Invades the Body: Lead can get into the body through various channels. It can be ingested and eaten or swallowed, especially by young children who enjoy chewing on things such as paint chips from the wall or off the floor. It can also be breathed in, especially if there are high amounts of lead particles in the air.
Those at Risk: Everybody is at risk when it comes to lead poisoning; however, children are at the highest risk as their bodies are smaller, and their organs are more sensitive to foreign substances invading their bodies.
Checking Your Home for Lead: A simple paint inspection or risk assessment check, performed by professionals like us, will tell you whether there are traces of lead in your home, especially in the paint on your walls.
If your home was built before 1978, this might be of concern to you. If you have even the slightest worry that your home may have traces of lead present in the paint, please contact us immediately and we’ll be happy to help.