How common is lead poisoning?
Lead poisoning affects 1 in 14 Iowa children. This is four times the national average.
Lead poisoning is usually caused by lead-based paint found in homes built before 1960. About 60 percent of homes in Iowa were built before 1960, both in urban and rural areas.
HOW CAN YOU TELL IF YOUR CHILD IS LEAD-POISONED?
The only way to tell if your child is lead-poisoned is to have their blood tested. All Iowa children must be tested for lead poisoning before starting kindergarten.
HOW DO CHILDREN BECOME LEAD POISONED
Children become lead poisoned when they:
- Put lead-based pain chips in their mouths
- Put dusty or dirty hands, toys, bottles or pacifies in their mouths
- Chew on surfaces painted with lead-based paint
- Play in dirt or a sandbox near an old house or building or where one was torn down
- Breathe in dust from lead-based paint that is being sanded, scraped or removed