QUESTION: Is there permanent damage from childhood lead poisoning & what can I do about it?
25 Oct 2006, Florida USA
When my son was 3 years old, his blood was tested for high levels of lead, because the home I lived in was an older home. The test came back that he indeed did have high levels. He is now 13. I have had him in counselling, seen by psychiatrists, Been on medication for ADD, in speech classes at school, and in ESE classes. Nothing has worked. I have told all these professionals about the high levels of lead. Their response is "It is out of his system now, with no permanent affects", or they completely disregard what I tell them. My question is, Is there permanent damage from lead poisoning? And what can I do to help my son?
ANSWER: 25 Oct 2006
You would have to have serious doubts about all the other advice that any professional health advisor gives you if they say to you "It is out of his system now, with no permanent affects" in regard to lead. All the evidence about lead poisoning points to there being (and this varies from individual to individual depending on the level and length of exposure and age at the time of exposure) some temporary effects (eg delayed milestones such as speech, crawling, walking etc in babies) and some permanent effects such as stunted growth, hearing loss, IQ loss etc.
As to what you can do about it, there is an excellent fact sheet written for school teachers and counsellors called "The Early Lead Poisoned Child In The Classroom: Symptomatology and Intervention for School Psychologists and School-Based Personnel" and also at http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Autism-Lead/links/ Secondly, if you can find a well-informed holistic medical practitioner or naturopath, then you can discuss assessment of mineral status, dietary changes and nutritional supplements, and all the huge range of options for possible detox such as NCD Zeolite, chelation therapy, saunas, clay baths, colloidal silver. We don't recommend any particular detox regime because it is so individual - we simply recommend you find an up-to-date complementary medicine practitioner and discuss it. You can find doctors who have been trained to carry out chelation therapy at www.acam.org - The American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM).
Thirdly, you will likely need a lot of support while making your way through the process of helping your teenage son so we have set up two egroups for discussion of these issues. I will send you an invitation to join Leaded Kids egroup but please let me know if you would also like to join Autism-Lead egroup. You can read descriptions of all our egroups (and then go to the egroup website to join up) at www.lead.org.au/egroups.html and you may wish to note that there has been some discussion in some of these egroups about which practitioners have been helpful.
I hope this helps. Please email again with any comments or questions. I'd be particularly keen to know what your son's blood lead level was if you need "ammunition" (lead research relating health effects to blood lead levels) to show to his teachers and counsellors.
All the best
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