- Healthy living
- Babies and toddlers
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Better Health Channel
The Victoria (Australia) state government provides online consumer-focused health and medical information.
Department of Labour
The Department of Labour is responsible for making sure people aren’t exposed to high lead levels at work.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Health information from the US government.
Lead-based paint and lead poisoning
Lead may come from a number of sources. The biggest source of non-occupational exposure to lead is lead-based paint.
Lead-based paint can be found on and around houses built before 1970, and particularly before 1945. If you’ve got an older house, it’s important to be aware of the risks of lead-based paint.
When old paint is removed, the lead in it may settle in dust or soil. If you’re renovating or repainting your house – or if older paint is flaking off – you need to take care to protect yourself and your family from lead poisoning.
Children are especially at risk from lead poisoning. Adults and children with lead poisoning will have either very vague or non-specific symptoms such as:
- stomach pains
- difficulty sleeping
- loss of appetite.
Or they may have no symptoms at all.
Untreated lead poisoning can go on to affect other parts of the body and may in rare cases lead to death.
If you think your house may have been painted with lead-based paint, talk to a health protection officer about what to do. You can find one at your local public health unit. It’s easy to test for, and it means you can take steps to keep your family safe.