Lead poisoning is an extremely serious issue that can have truly catastrophic consequences for families with young children. In the majority of cases of lead poisoning, children were afflicted with the condition because they ate something that had lead paint on it, they sucked on lead paint chips, or they breathed in lead paint dust. This is due up until the year 1978, lead based paints were legal to use, and were widely used throughout the United States. This means that there is a high possibility of lead paint being in the majority of residences through the country.
While the paint can no longer be bought or used, the paint that was used prior to 1978 is now beginning to break down, and leave behind chips, dust, and other particulate matter. If ingested, the dust and chips can cause lead poisoning, especially in small children. Even small amounts of lead can cause significant health damage. Since children are smaller in size, they are more negatively affected because they then have a higher amount of lead concentrated in their bodies.
What's even more disturbing is that there have been a number of toys and children's products that have been in the news as of late, because of having high levels of lead. This is an extremely serious issue because products for children are often placed in the mouth leading to direct exposure with the substance.
There are a number of things to be on the lookout for if you suspect your child may have been harmed. The following symptoms are associated with lead poisoning: constipation; Brain injuries; A reduced IQ; A slowing of body growth; Injuries to the nervous system; Headaches; Problems with hearing; Convulsions or seizures; Mental retardation; Kidney damage; Coma; And death.
If you suspect that your child has been exposed to lead, and may have been poisoned, it is critical that you seek prompt medical attention. Medical professionals will evaluate the child to determine if the symptoms being experienced are due to lead. If the child has been poisoned, there are two main courses of treatment. The most common treatment for children is a specialized diet that helps to rid the body of lead by providing balanced nutrition with proper amounts of minerals and vitamins. If this does not help the situation, chelation therapy may be ordered. This type of therapy involves the child taking chelating agents. These agents draw the lead out of the blood stream and remove it from the body through the urine.
There are also cases where children have been poisoned with lead because of poorly maintained rental properties that they have stayed in. In these cases, the owner of the property did not keep up with general maintenance and paint may be flaking off the walls. When this is ingested or inhaled, the child may become sick. There are a number of cases of children who have been diagnosed with lead poisoning because of having lived in a location at some point during their developmental years that had lead paint.
Because of the fact that lead paint was legal up until 1978, manufacturers could not be held liable. This theory has been proven time and time again with failed lawsuits. That being said, there are still a number of people that can be held accountable should your child become poisoned with lead today.
In the event that your child was poisoned with lead from a rental property, you can possibly hold the landlord and / or any remodelers accountable. Because renovations are expensive, landlords may knowfully cut costs and hire contractors who will not properly handle the area to ensure lead paint is contained. This will give you recourse against both the landlord and the contractor. In the event that the landlord takes on the renovations him or herself, only that party will be able to be held liable.
In the event that your child was harmed because of a toy or children's product that contained lead, you still have a strong claim, and you will be able to hold the manufacturer of the product accountable for any injuries and medical expenses you have incurred as a Result of the poisoning.
If you or someone you know has suffered because of a child being poisoned by lead there are a number of different actions you can take. The best thing to do is to contact a personal injury attorney who specializes in this area of the law immediately. He or she will evaluate your claim, assess its validity, and help you determine the best way to proceed.
Since most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, you will not have to pay anything upfront, or worry about how to fund your claim as it progresses through the legal system. Because these cases are quiet complex, and states differ a great deal in their requirements, it is extremely important that you seek legal assistance to help protect your child and your family.
There is a variety of different types of compensation you may be able to receive for your injuries. If your child was harmed while living in a rental property, and the child has undergone a complete medical evaluation that backs up your claim, the law is quite favorable. Landlords may be required to pay for all of your medical bills, the expenses for having the property tested, the cost of having to clean up the property, as well as any future expenses for care for your child. There are even cases where the landlord will be forced to pay your rent at a new location while the case is proceeding through the system.
For children who were harmed by lead paint in children's products or toys, manufacturers will have to pay for all past, present, and future medical expenses, as well as punitive damages in many cases.
There is simply no reason for children to be harmed by lead paint in this day and age. Contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible to help ensure your rights are properly protected.