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Lead paint is an issue that plagues many homes. It’s especially worrisome if you have children in your home, as lead can be absorbed into the bloodstream and cause brain damage, developmental delays, and other issues.
So what should you do if you fear that your home contains lead paint? Understanding the danger of lead paint and the steps that you should take to remedy the situation is key.
What Is Lead Paint?
Lead paint is a type of paint that was commonly used in homes before 1978. It has a number of uses, but most often it’s found on the outside of homes and buildings because lead paint lasts for decades, sometimes up to 100 years. This means that if your home was built prior to 1978, there’s a chance that you have lead paint on the exterior.
Lead paint isn’t just dangerous on the outside of your home. It can also be found in homes’ interiors, attached to wood or metal surfaces that over time become worn and scratched.
Over time, loose paint chips off these surfaces and poses a health risk in itself, but it’s even more dangerous when homeowners sand down these surfaces, failing to properly remove the remaining paint chips.
What Are the Dangers of Lead Paint?
Lead paint can be dangerous if ingested or absorbed into the body. Kids are especially vulnerable to lead paint because they’re small, still developing their brains, and can absorb more than half of whatever amount they ingest.
If your home has lead paint, make sure to take certain steps in order to protect children from possible exposure (such as not involving them in any renovations or home improvements that might result in paint chips).
What Should I Do If I Think That My Home Might Have Lead Paint?
If you want to find out if your home has lead paint, you can hire a professional inspector to come in and take a look. Whether or not this is necessary really depends on the age of your home and how it might have been built. If it was built before 1950, certain parts of the home might be more likely to have lead paint.
If you’re renovating or remodeling your home, there are steps that you can take to mitigate any dangers posed by lead paint. Don’t sand down surfaces that may have old paint on them. If you suspect that they contain lead paint, cover the surface with plastic or another barrier to avoid creating paint chips. And never use a heat gun, open flame, or any other high-energy source to remove old paint.
What Happens If My Child Has Been Exposed to Lead?
If you suspect your child has come in contact with lead paint at home, take him or her in for testing. If there are any problems, you should also get in touch with your pediatrician immediately.
Although the effects of lead paint may not be fully understood yet, it’s best to err on the side of caution. By avoiding lead paint and taking children in for testing if you suspect they’ve been exposed, you can help avoid any negative effects.
Jeff Sommers is a vibrant and experienced professional, having been at the helm of ESP Painting, Inc. for 27 remarkable years. As President, he has become an esteemed leader in the Commercial & Residential Construction industry in Oregon, United States. His experience has seen him gain valuable insight and knowledge, making him an invaluable asset to ESP Painting and its customers. With a bubbly personality and upbeat attitude, Jeff always looks ahead to the future as he continues his leadership journey toward success.