Home Health Concerns

Lead
Lead is a naturally occurring element found in small amounts in the earth's crust. Lead was mined in Wisconsin. It was used in many products to stabilize things such as paint, varnish, gasoline, plastics, etc. However, lead is toxic to humans and animals. Using lead in products to which children and adults have ready access can cause lead poisoning.

For more information on lead click here: https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/lead/prevention.htm

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Wisconsin’s children are affected by lead poisoning in greater numbers than many other states (CDC 2015). Lead poisoning causes serious physical and financial harm to the children, their families, and society. Nearly all of Wisconsin’s affected children are exposed to lead hazards in their own homes; yet these exposures can be prevented! The effects of lead exposure can persist throughout a lifetime, and include negative lifelong changes in intellect, behavior, and health. For the latest Report on Childhood Lead Poisoning in Wisconsin: 
Wisconsin Lead Data

Lead Testing for Children

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) suggests that all children in Wisconsin should have a blood lead test. This is recommended for kids at ages 1 and 2, and for those between 3 and 5 who haven't had a test before. Children under 6 in Milwaukee need extra testing as per local health department guidelines.
A simple blood test helps find out if a child has been exposed to lead early on. This early detection allows parents and doctors to take important steps to keep the child healthy. Depending on the results, these steps might include removing lead hazards, giving the child foods rich in iron and calcium, connecting the child to early education services, and scheduling more blood lead tests.
Why early detection matters:
Not obvious symptoms: Lead poisoning doesn't always show obvious signs, so early blood tests are crucial.
Minimizing harm: Finding lead poisoning early helps get rid of sources of lead and minimizes harm.
Improving outcomes: With early action and support, kids exposed to lead can have better development.

Parents should talk to their child's doctor and schedule a blood lead test. For more info on follow-up and case management, visit CDC's Recommended Actions Based on Blood Lead Level page. Find out more about pediatric lead testing and the DHS recommendation on our website.

If your home was built before 1978, it may have lead-based paint that can be harmful. Renovations can release lead particles. Prevent exposure by doing renovations safely. Learn about lead-safe renovation at DHS Lead Information.


Mold
Tiny mold spores are all around us, both indoor and outdoors. These tiny mold spores travel easily thought the air and begin to grow indoors when moisture is present. A building will never be completely free of mold spores; however, indoor mold growth can be prevented and controlled. With any mold issue, the first recommendation should be to find and fix the moisture source. Since moisture is essential for mold growth, residents should quickly identify and fix any source causing excess moisture indoors. Household problems that can lead to indoor moisture problems include.
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Lead poisoning is 100% preventable. With enough resolve and commitment, it can be eliminated.
  • Roof leaks
  • Leaking pipes
  • High indoor humidity
  • Damp basement
  • Condensation due to high humidity
  • Flooding sprinkler system failure
  • Water drainage problems
Indoor Mold and Health
Anyone with questions or concerns about how mold is affecting their health should discuss those concerns with a doctor. Most people do not experience major health effects from mold. For the majority of people, being around mold causes nothing more than itchy eyes, coughing or sneezing. For others, it can have more serious effects like an asthma attack or lung problems. Those who may be more sensitive are children and adults with allergies or asthma, or people with existing respiratory conditions or weakened immune systems.


Mold Prevention Tips for Residents
Important actions can be taken to prevent indoor mold from becoming a problem.
  • Keep indoor spaces well-ventilated and dry; air conditioners and dehumidifiers help. 
  • Keep indoor humidity below 50%
  • Clean bathrooms often and keep surfaces dry, running the bathroom ventilation fan during and after showers.
  • Promptly fix water leaks
  • Clean up and dry your home fully and quickly (within 24-48 hours) after any flooding event.

Testing and Cleaning Mold
It is not recommended that residents test for mold. If you see or smell mold, there is mold present. Testing is expensive and there are no air standards for indoor measurements. If you believe that you have mold, find the source, fix it and clean the area. To find more information on the recommended cleaning procedure go to:


https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/mold/clean.htm

For even more information on mold go to: 
https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/mold/index.htm
https://www.eli.org/buildings/iaq-guide-tenants
https://www.epa.gov/mold
https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/mold/index.html
https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/publications/p0/p00631.pdf

Radon
Are radon levels high in your home?

Radon is a tasteless, odorless, invisible, radioactive gas found in most homes within the United States. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Your risk increases if you are a smoker.

The Greendale Public Health Department has radon kits available for sale for residents. Please call Greendale Public Health Department (414-423-2110) for your kit. 
Get more information at:
Southeastern Wisconsin
US EPA Radon