Blood Lead Screening
Lead is a poisonous metal that our bodies cannot use. Even small amounts inside the body can be harmful to your child’s brain, kidneys and other organs and can cause learning problems, hearing problems and behavioral problems.
Keep your child safe from lead poisoning
Children are at the highest risk for lead poisoning at early ages. Help protect your child from lead poisoning by asking your provider to test your baby’s blood for lead when he or she is 1 year old and again at 2 years old.
All babies and toddlers need to be tested for lead at:
- 12 months (1 year old)
- 24 months (2 years old)
- Children under 6 that have not been tested before, also need to be tested
Common symptoms of lead poisoning
- Stomach ache;
- Frequent vomiting;
- Sleep disorders;
- Poor appetite.
Protecting your child from lead poisoning
- Don't allow your child to put things in his/her mouth that may be dirty or have lead paint on them.
- Have your child wash his/her hands before eating.
- Wash bottles, pacifiers and toys often.
- Wet mop and wet dust hard surfaces frequently. Avoid vacuuming which forces fine dust into the air.
- Be alert for chipping and flaking paint.
- Replace imported plastic mini-blinds made before 1997.
- Don't use pottery, pewter, or lead crystal for cooking or serving food.
- Feed your children regular nutritious meals. Lead in the body stops good iron and calcium from working right so it is important to feed your child a well-balanced diet. Make sure children eat regular nutritious meals, since more lead is absorbed on an empty stomach.
Prevention is key when it comes to lead poisoning. If you have any questions or concerns, or would like additional information, please contact the Oklahoma Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (OCLPPP) at the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) at 405-271-6617.
Remember, if you are using a point-of-care lead testing device (such as Lead Care II), you are required to report ALL testing results to the Oklahoma Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (OCLPPP). Call OSDH for more information.
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