Oklahoma City mom warns of lead based paint after daughter gets sick

A potential poison could be hiding in your home.

One Oklahoma City mom wants to warn others about lead-based paint after it caused her daughter to get sick.

Jessica Thompson says she and her husband were in the throes of starting a life as first time home owners and new parents. They began to noticed 6-month-old Olivia wasn't gaining weight.

"The doctor knew I lived in an older area and he was kind of concerned because she was so young and so he went and had her blood tested,” Thompson said.

Thompson says her doctor was suspicious that Olivia could have lead poisoning.

"That night the doctor called me and said you need to take her to the ER and have her tested because the levels came back so high, she could have been dead type thing,” Thompson said.

Thompson tells us the hospital blood test showed the level of lead in Olivia's blood as a little lower, but still twice the normal range. Thompson soon learned the exposure likely happened right inside their home.

"I was kind of devastated when I found out. Because I thought okay... I don't even know where to start,” Thompson said.

Through home lead testing Thompson discovered lead based paint was exposed on some of their window sills and baseboards. Their older home in the Ten Penn area was built in the 1920s, well before lead based paint was banned in 1978.

"So I painted over it for now, but ultimately I just want to get it out of my house so we're going to replace all the baseboard and trim. But it's safer now because it says if you paint over the lead, you encapsulate it,” Thompson said.

Luckily Olivia didn't suffer any developmental delays and she's now a healthy toddler. But Thompson urges parents everywhere to check their home.

"I would say definitely as a homeowner, and even a renter, do due diligence in finding out if there is lead,” Thompson said.

Stores like Ace Hardware actually sell home lead based testing kits. They're easy to use and will let you know right away if lead based paint is present and exposed.

The health department also offers help through the Oklahoma Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.

Symptoms of lead poisoning:

  • Stomach ache
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep trouble
  • Lack of appetite or inability to gain weight.

 

Ways to prevent lead poisoning:

  • Test areas of your home if it was built before 1978
  • Wash bottles, pacifiers and toys often and make sure your child doesn’t put them in their mouths
  • Make sure your child washes their hands often
  • Replace any plastic blinds built before 1997
  • Check your child’s toys to make sure they weren’t recalled for lead paint or that they’re new enough lead paint wasn't used
  • Be careful with pottery or pewter, and costume jewelry, those could have lead in them.

Source: http://okcfox.com/news/local/oklahoma-city-mom-warns-of-lead-based-paint-after-daughter-gets-sick
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