Lead Poisoning

Lead Poisoning

Lead can damage nearly every system in the human body and has harmful effects on both adults and children.  The high presence of lead in our society makes it necessary to keep track of exposures to keep the public safe and healthy.  A child may not look or act sick, but may still have elevated blood lead levels.


Effects of Lead Poisoning

  • Lowers IQ

  • Learning problems

  • Hearing loss

  • Slow growth

  • Behavior problems

  • Decreased attention span

  • Hyperactivity

  • Language Deficiency 

Prenatal Exposure can affect your unborn baby: 


  • Early birth

  • Low birth weight

  • Miscarriage

Common Risk Factors for Children

  • Live in or frequent visits to homes built before 1950

  • Time spent in homes built prior to 1978 with chipping/peeling paint

  • Live in high risk zip codes 45373, 45356, 45371

  • Sibling or playmate with history of lead poisoning

  • Exposure to adults who work or have hobbies involving lead (Examples:  Construction, manufacturing, welding, pottery, painting, casting ammunition)

There are numerous potential sources of lead exposure:

  • Deteriorating lead-based paint 

  • Cosmetics containing lead

  • Foods containing lead

  • Hobbies that include using lead-based materials

  • Lead dust

  • Occupations that involve exposure to lead

  • Soil contaminated with lead

  • Toys containing lead such as lead-based paint

  • Water with elevated lead levels


TESTING FOR LEAD – When should children be tested?

There is no “safe” level of lead in the blood – any confirmed level is an indication that the child has been exposed. 

Children should be tested at age 1 and 2 years, or up to 6 years if no previous test has been done, based on the following criteria:

  • If the child is on Medicaid, he/she must be tested according to Ohio and Medicaid Rules. 

  • If the child resides in a high-risk zip code (45373, 45356, 45371), he/she must be tested according to Ohio law.

  • If the parent(s) responds “yes” or the answer is unknown to one or more of the questions below, the child must be tested:

    • Does the child live in or regularly visit a residential unit, child care facility, or school built before 1950?

    • Does the child live in or regularly visit a residential unit, child care facility, or school built before 1978 that has deteriorated paint?  

    • Does the child live in or regularly visit a residential unit built before 1978 with recent, ongoing, or planned renovation/remodeling?

    • Does the child have a sibling or playmate that has or did have lead poisoning?

    • Does the child come in frequent contact with an adult who has a lead-related hobby, or occupation?

    • Does the child live near an active/former lead smelter, battery recycling plant, or other industry known to generate airborne lead dust?






  • QUESTIONS? CALL 1-877-LEADSAFE (532-3723)