Adams County seeing more lead poisoning in kids - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Adams County seeing more lead poisoning in kids

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QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

Do you know how old the paint is in your home? If it was built before 1978, chances are the paint contains lead, which is extremely dangerous for kids.

According to the Adams County Health Department, Adams County has an extremely high incidence of lead levels in young children.

In conjunction with Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, the health department is offering various flyers on how to prevent lead poisoning in your home.

The most at-risk for lead poisoning are young children and pregnant women. Karen Spring with the Adams County Health Department said parents should start testing their children when they turn one year old with a simple blood test.

"As time goes on you can have developmental problems," Spring said. "So you may see a child at 18 months or two years that's been walking and talking normally and all of a sudden they may have trouble doing that. They may be falling or they may be having trouble with their speech."

Spring said the most common way for kids to get lead poisoning is by eating chips of lead-based paint.

"They taste sweet," Spring said. "So those children in those early ages where they crawl or they're just learning how to walk and they'll fall, they usually have their hands in their mouths. So if they have that on their hands, that's how they receive the lead into their system."

If you think your house has lead hazards, Spring suggests you clean up paint chips immediately. Also, make sure your kids are not chewing window sills or other painted surfaces. And, if you rent, notify your landlords of peeling or chipping paint.

If you'd like more information on lead poisoning or to set up a blood-test appointment to check for lead levels in your child, you can call the Adams County Health Department at (217)222-8440.

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