Posted on: August 3, 2010
Safe and Healthy Homes is a primary prevention partnership linking parents and resources in an effort to abate lead hazards before toddlers begin crawling and exploring the home environment. Safe and Healthy Homes is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Of the 1.2 million children aged 6 years and younger in Illinois, approximately 110,000 children have blood lead levels that are too high. Lead poisoning does not always produce symptoms. It can be detected with a simple blood test. Because lead is found everywhere, city, suburban and rural children are all at risk if they breathe in lead dust or eat lead paint and dust. Read this brochure to find out more about lead poisoning. Call your doctor, your local health department or the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Illinois Lead Program at 217-782-3517 or 866-909-3572 or TTY 800-547-0466 for information on having your home inspected for lead and removing lead hazards safely. [...more]
What blood lead level is considered unsafe?
A child with a blood lead level (BLL) greater than or equal to 10 micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dL) is lead poisoned. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) changed its definition to this level in 1990 because evidence indicated adverse health effects at lower BLLs. The level considered unsafe has steadily decreased since the early 1960s, when any blood lead result less than 60 mcg/dL was acceptable. [...more]
Certain housekeeping methods can reduce the amount of lead dust in your home. By reducing dust, these easy cleaning tips can prevent lead poisoning and lower blood lead levels. Before cleaning, all areas that display flaking or peeling paint need to be repaired. Please contact the Illinois Department of Public Health at 217-782-3517 for information on repairing or renovating your home or for a list of licensed lead inspectors and contractors. [...more]
The only way to totally prevent lead poisoning and to lower blood lead levels is to remove all sources of lead. However, certain aspects of nutrition and hygiene can influence the amount of lead absorbed by a child. [...more]
For more information about lead poisoning prevention and the Safe and Healthy Homes Project, please contact:
Director, Prevention Projects
1400 W. Hubbard
Chicago, IL 60642
312/733-1026, ext 213