The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that it has reduced the limit for child lead poisoning from 10 micrograms per deciliter of blood to five. According to Consumer Reports, there is no amount of lead level that is safe in children. This move encourages everyone from product manufacturers to consumers and parents to work on eliminating all lead from the environment.

CDC statistics show that about 250,000 children in the United States between the ages of 1 and 5 have blood lead levels greater than 10 micrograms per deciliter of blood. About 450,000 children in that age group have lead levels greater than 5 micrograms per deciliter of blood. Under the earlier rule 10 micrograms was the level at which the CDC recommended that public health actions be initiated. Now that level has been brought down to 5 micrograms. This change also alters the definition of what is considered lead poisoning in children.

Lead Toxicity and its Dangers

Lead is commonly found in a number of household products including paint, children’s art and craft products and toys. There are a number of defective products in the market that still have unacceptably high levels of lead and other dangerous substances such as cadmium. A number of these products are made for children. Lead exposure can have significant, long-term consequences for children including irreversible brain damage, lower IQ and learning and other developmental disabilities.

Taking Preventive Steps

As a parent or caregiver, it is important to be aware and take various steps to prevent your child from getting lead poisoned. First, talk to your local health department about testing for lead in household paint and dust. Be wary of do-it-yourself projects around the house. Use caution before you sand, cut or demolish any structures built before 1978. Most of these homes have lead paint in them. Do renovations only with the help and guidance of a certified professional.

If you have peeling house paint or paint chips, mop those areas frequently. Limit lead that you can bring in from the soil by wiping your feet on mats outside the door. If possible, have people remove shoes before entering your house. Always stay on top of recall announcements relating to lead-tainted products such as children’s toys. This information can be found at the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s web site at www.cpsc.gov.

Protecting Your Rights

If you find that your child has lead in his or her blood after testing, do discuss the results with your physician. It would also be in your best interests to contact an experienced California personal injury lawyer, who has successfully handled lead poisoning cases against property owners and manufacturers of defective products. The best product liability law firms will always offer a free consultation and comprehensive case evaluation to injured victims and their families.