Tips To Protect Your Family
Tips to Protect Your Family From Lead
Steps to reduce lead hazards in your home:
- Be alert for chipping, flaking and peeling paint. Make sure painted surfaces are properly maintained.
- Use only safe interior paints on toys, walls, furniture, etc.
- Replace any plastic miniblinds made outside the United States with a type that is lead free.
- Clean floors, window sills, window frames and other surfaces at least weekly using a powdered dishwasher detergent (Check the label to make sure the detergent contains "phosphate") or a special lead cleaning product.
- Thoroughly rinse sponges and mop heads after cleaning dirty or dusty areas.
- Use a separate bucket of water for rinsing these items.
- Clean or remove your shoes before entering your home to avoid tracking in lead from soil.
- Clean up dust with a wet cloth and powder dishwasher detergent.
Steps to reduce lead hazards in your kitchen:
- Store food properly. Avoid storing food in open cans, pottery, ceramics or lead crystal.
- Do not drink, cook, or make baby formula with hot tap water.
- If the cold water has not been used for more than two hours, run it for 1-2 minutes before drinking or using.
- Serve well-balanced meals.
Steps to reduce lead hazards with your child:
- Wash hands before preparing meals, eating and before nap or bedtime.
- Wash toys, stuffed animals and pacifiers often.
- Find safe play areas (such as lead-free sand or grassy areas).
- Don’t allow children to eat snow or icicles.
- Don’t let children eat things that fall on the ground or chew on painted surfaces. (Paint chips taste sweet)
- Don’t let children wear imported jewelry that may contain lead.
- You can get information from the Consumer Product Safety Commission about products that are recalled due to lead.
Steps to reduce lead hazards from your work place:
- If you work with lead, shampoo, shower and change clothes before going home and wash your clothes separately from the rest of the family.
- Take your shoes off before coming into the house.
- If you are pregnant and your job exposes you to lead, talk with your supervisor and your physician right away.
- Follow all occupational safety guidelines to limit your exposure.
Steps to reduce lead hazards outside your home:
- Cover bare soil with mulch, shrubs, or grass to prevent exposure.
- Build a sandbox (using lead free play sand) so children can play safely.
- Wash off foods grown in your garden.
- Wash the child’s face, hands and toys after playing outside.
Steps to reduce lead hazards during renovation or remodeling:
- Hire a certified lead-based paint professional to remove the lead-based paint from your home. (Go to the lead assessment and abatement section for a list of Tennessee certified professionals).
- Don’t use a belt-sander, propane torch, dry scraping, or dry sanding on painted surfaces that might contain lead. This will generate large amounts of lead dust that could remain in the house for a long time.
- You may need to temporarily move your family (especially children and pregnant women) out of the apartment or house until the work is completed and the area is properly cleaned. If you can’t move your family out, at least completely seal off the work area.