Keep Your Children Lead Free
The current Fisher Price toy recall has prompted the Health Department to advise parents and/or caregivers as to the importance of lead testing for children. Lead can poison people. It can be harmful to babies. If lead gets into your baby's body, it could cause: a lower IQ, kidney damage, hearing loss, growth problems, anemia and behavior problems. Even small amounts can be harmful. Lead can be found in paint, dust, soil and water.
The Cattaraugus County Health Department urges all parents to have their children tested for lead at ages one and two. Barbara Hastings, Public Health Director, also stresses that any child who has played with the recalled Fisher Price toys and has a habit of putting their hands in their mouths should also be tested. “Lead poisoning is preventable and treatable.” she advises. Signs of lead poisoning might include stomach aches, crankiness or tiredness. But usually, there are NO signs. A blood test for lead is the only way to tell. Parents should contact their primary care provider or the Health Department for information about lead testing.
Steps parents can take to avoid lead poisoning include:
- Keep children away from paint chips and dust
- Damp-mop floors and wet wipe surfaces twice a week
- Wash your child's hands often, especially before eating
- Wash toys often, especially teething toys
- Use COLD water for cooking and mixing formula
- Don't store foods in open tin cans
- Use only lead-free dishes
- Don't bring lead home from work. People who work in construction, plumbing, painting, auto repair can be exposed to lead. Wash work clothes separately and don't wear work shoes in your home
- Keep children away from remodeling work. Old paint can have lead in it
- Be careful of hobbies that might use lead
- Feed your family foods high in iron and calcium and give your children healthy snacks.
For more information on this recall and on lead poisoning please check the following links:
- Fisher-Price Toys with Lead Paint Hazard Recall
- U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission: Fisher Price toy recall
- Lead Poisoning Prevention
For more information regarding lead poisoning, please contact the Health Department at 716-373-8050.