Environmental Issue & Sick Building Syndrome Blog

          Lead dust or lead in drinking water can easily rob a child of 10 IQ points, or be the cause of behavior problems. These problems last a lifetime and there is no remedy or cure, only prevention.

          The damage done to a child is damage done to all of us. We need to be responsible to avoid lead hazards. For an article I wrote about what you can do about lead in the home, got to http://www.envirospect.com/Lead


Health Effects of Lead in Children According to the EPA

Damage to the brain and nervous system

Behavior and hearing problems

Lowering of IQ

Slow physical growth



Health Effects of Lead in Adults According to the EPA

Nervous system effects

Cardiovascular effects

Decreased kidney function

Reproductive problems

Miscarriage and premature birth in women

Keeping Your Home Lead Safe

  • Keep all surfaces well painted. HUD suggests no more than 1 square inch of peeling paint
  • Repair the causes of peeling paint such as leaks promptly
  • Keep the home dust free
  • Wet mop wood floors that may contain lead
  • Wet wipe friction areas such as where windows and doors rub
  • Do not use steel wool or friction pads on surfaces that may contain lead
  • Run water for 30 seconds before using for drinking or food preparation to reduce lead in lines
  • Use only cold water to prepare foods
  • Teach children to wash hands and remove shoes after playing outside
  • Use lead safe procedures for hobbies that use lead such as ceramics, stained glass, fish lures.
  • Do not use sweepers with beater bars of mops with scrubber strips on finishes that contain lead
  • Do not shake or beat carpets in homes that may contain lead dust.

Testing for lead

Physicians can test for lead in blood. This is a simple test that should be conducted if there is any possibility that lead exposure could occur in the home, school, daycare or any other place a child may spend time.   

Surfaces can be tested for lead using 3M Lead Check Swabs. These EPA approved tests determine of lead is on the surface of tested finishes and are available from 3M directly or other retail outlets. Call 800-949-3552 or go to www.leadcheck.com/contactus to order  

Layers of paint can be tested using EPA approved D-Lead test systems. These tests use a punch tool and allow testing of all of the layers of paint at a location. These can be used for applying the EPA RRP rule. Locate a distributor at www.esca-tech.com or call 414-962-3006

XRF standing for X-Ray Fluorescence is a HUD approved methodology that would only be available from a highly trained and licensed lead assessment professional.

Posted in:Lead Poisoning and tagged: LeadEPApoisioning
Posted by Dan Howard on October 19th, 2018 8:03 PM

        According to the EPA, 1 out of 10 children have Asthma. Just imagine what that means to every one of their families. Picture the mothers. fathers and others flinching as a child struggles and gasps for air.

        A child never gets back the missed ball games or other special occasions during a chronic episode. They will always remember the doctor visits, the very scary nights in the hospital.

            There is overwhelming stress and anxiety for everyone when an Acute Asthma attack occurs. Ironically, that stress can add to the severity of the attack.That stress is deeply emotional and too often very financial.

             In the past, we centered our attention to providing the proper Asthma medication for our children. Isn’t it time that we trade reaching for an inhaler for doing things to AVOID having that attack!

             Even one avoided Asthma attach can be a victory. With a change in how we approach this affliction, we can have many more than 1 victory

             A “Functional Medical” provider and a growing number of other medical practitioners have programs that consider the whole person and their individual lifestyles and environments.

              These professionals can help patients and caregivers to reduce the underlying conditions that will elevate a chronic disease such as Asthma to an acute attack.

           Some of those factors are diet, weight and exercise. Other factors to consider relate to nutrition and sleep patterns.Then, there is one more very important and too often ignored factor. That is the indoor air environment

           The step by step way to improve the home to avoid asthma attacks is our separate video that I hope you will take time to view. It has great suggestions you may not have thought about.

          The poets describe our lives as going “from our first breath to our last”. We breath day and night, in good times and bad times. We can skip eating for a day. We can’t stop breathing and remain alive for more than minutes. That makes the indoor environment a 24-7-365 kind of issue.

           In our care for asthmatic children and adults, we must look at the underlying conditions that harbor mold and allergens and take positive action to minimize those exposures.

            We then need to test the air we breathe for trigger molds and allergens.

            If we find elevated mold and allergens, we need to take action to protect our loved ones by eliminating those airborne triggers. First by removing the conditions that contribute to the elevated levels and then by eliminating those nasty culprits we breathe in thousands of times a day.

          Treatment should be conducted using a “Green” treatment product that is applied by professionals sensitive to the issues surrounding indoor air quality and its effect on general health. We need to take care to avoid making the indoor environment worse by having unprofessional treatment using harsh chemicals.

Posted by Dan Howard on January 15th, 2017 8:03 PM

          If you listen to the news, Americans care more than ever about what we put in our bodies.  Fats, additives, cholesterol, too much sugar, and on and on have become big media and legislative issues. We are paying a lot of attention to what is eaten

            On the other hand, we don’t spend much time thinking about the water we drink.  Make no mistake about it, we are way ahead of previous generations and past civilizations in the safety of our water. History is full of whole armies, societies and populations that have been decimated or even ended by drinking water contaminants and diseases. We are a far cry from that state of affairs, but not completely safe. 

           If you think about it, the amazing and at the same time disgusting fact is that the water in your spigot may contain water treated by an upstream sewage plant, and yet we drink it.

           America has one of the safest water systems in the world. On the other hand, we have seen serious brain damage and other health problems can occur in places like Flint Michigan. The scary part is that the damage to many lead poisoned children is now a health and developmental problem that will live with them and those around them all of their lives.

         The rest of the story in Flint Michigan is that even if the water quality is corrected, the pipes themselves are now chemically damaged and will continue to leech lead into the drinking and cooking water of the residents. Digging up and replacing the underground main service line pipes, hot water tanks and damaged pipes in homes has been estimated to have a cost of between 20 and 200 million dollars in that city of 100,000 residents.  Many of those residents can simply not afford to do the needed work in their individual homes. Cost of replacing the damaged underground municipal system is claimed to be 1.5 billion dollars.

        If the water of Flint was properly treated, the poisoning and permanent physical damage to the people drinking the water would have never occurred. The big question to ask as you stare at your own glass of water from your tap should be: Is my water safe?

         The EPA requires that each municipal water treatment system provide an annual “Consumer Confidence Report” (abbreviated CCR) and make that report available to the consumers of the water.  It only took minutes for me to look up the report for the local water authority that supplies our home. The good news is that the water was pretty good……in this case. The bad news is that I had never checked that information on the water we drink before today. All of us need to take a look at the report for our homes.

Click for download of full PDF article      http://goo.gl/BM9Skv

Posted by Dan Howard on April 2nd, 2016 10:27 PM



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