Lead in children’s blood is still a problem

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The blood lead reference value (BLRV) for children has been updated by the centers for disease control based on a recommendation made back in May by the Lead Exposure Prevention and Advisory Committee.

According to a press release, The BLRV is intended to identify children with higher levels of lead in their blood compared to most children, based on the 97.5th percentile of the blood lead level (BLL) distribution in U.S. children ages 1–5 years.

Healthcare providers and departments, federal partners as well as many others, have been asked to focus their resources on U.S. children ages 1-5 who have the highest blood lead levels. That way more actions can be taken promptly to reduce the lead levels, mitigate health effects and Identify and eliminate exposure sources.

Even though there has been a decline in BLL’s, exposure to lead remains a significant health concern for children. This is due to lead amounts that are still persistent in the environment.

Household Lead Sources

  • Lead-based paint,
  • Soil contaminated by historical sources of lead including automobile gasoline and activities such as lead mining or smelting,
  • Drinking water lead service lines,
  • Lead in household plumbing materials.
  • Through ingestion of contaminated candies and food packaging; some
  • Folk remedies
  • Cultural products
  • Consumer products; and lead dust that caregivers might bring home on their clothing from their workplaces.

There has been no safe blood lead level identified. Even the smallest amount of lead in blood can affect learning and academic achievements. If any kind of lead levels are found early on, there are steps that can be taken by parents and healthcare providers to prevent any further exposure and reduce any more damage to the health of the child.

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