Lead Exposure in Kent County

About Lead Poisoning

Understand the dangers of lead exposure and where lead risks can be found in Kent County.
  • Dust from lead-based paint in homes built before 1978 is the #1 risk factor for lead poisoning.
    • Deteriorating lead-based paint and lead dust as the main contributing environmental factor in about 90% of all childhood lead poisoning cases in Kent County.
    • Four out of five homes in Grand Rapids, and nearly three of five homes in Kent County, were built before 1978, the year lead was banned from paint.
  • Young children have the highest risk of lead poisoning and its consequences.
  • Other potential sources of lead can include exposed soil, lead pipes/fixtures, cultural exposures (traditional medicines, spices, pottery, toys, or cosmetics), jobs or hobbies of the adults in the home (construction, auto repair, furniture refinishing, indoor target practice, etc.).
  • Possible health effects of Lead Poisoning include
    • Developmental delays, poor school performance, or behavior problems, hearing loss, anemia, or damage to the kidneys, heart, or nervous system.
  • Good nutrition can help protect children from the effects of lead exposure.
  • Preventing lead poisoning before it happens is the best way to keep your family safe.