Lead

Friday, February 12, 2010

We all have a small amount of lead in our bodies but when those levels rise, it can do harmful things. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about lead and its effect on our health in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Lead can get into your body in two ways: inhalation and ingestion. You might breathe in lead dust or lead fumes without even knowing it. You can swallow lead dust if it gets in your food or drinks.

Too much lead in the body can cause irreversible problems in growth and development in children. In adults, lead poisoning can cause serious health problems, including high blood pressure and damage to the brain, nervous system, stomach and kidneys.

Lead poisoning is usually caused by months or years of exposure to small amounts of lead in the home, work or day care environment. The most common source of lead exposure for children is lead-based paint and dust and soil that are contaminated by lead.

When lead poisoning levels are severe, some general symptoms can include digestive problems, fatigue, headaches and higher rates of tooth decay.

Treatment includes removing the source of lead exposure and eating a balanced diet.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.