Lead has been a material used in many types of products we encounter on an everyday basis for thousands of years. It became especially popular during the time of the Roman Empire. Not only did the Romans make dishes and pipes for water out of lead, but they would even use it as a sweetener or flavoring product to put into their wine—a concept that is almost unthinkable now that we know lead, although it’s highly useful as a metal material, is also toxic and poisonous. In fact, it is thought that the effects of lead poisoning from the material getting into liquids may have been a contributing factor in the fall of the Roman Empire.
While we no longer use lead-based paint or leaded gasoline, that doesn’t mean we don’t still encounter lead on a daily basis. It’s still found in electronic coatings, batteries, some types of candle wicks, soldering and other types of products. And there are some homes that still have lead paint or lead pipes that must be addressed.
Here’s some information about why you should invest in lead testing in Aspen, CO to avoid lead exposure and poisoning.
Why lead can be dangerous
Lead is toxic because it replaces other materials in biochemical reactions, including calcium, iron and zinc. It gets in the way of proteins that cause some genes to turn on and off by essentially pushing out other metals that would be found in molecules. This means the shape of a given protein molecule will change when interacting with lead in such a way that it will be unable to perform its primary intended functions.
Scientists are still analyzing which molecules bind with lead, but they do know that some of the proteins that tend to be affected by lead can regulate such important bodily functions as blood pressure, the production of heme and the production of sperm. This means that lead interfering with these proteins could cause developmental delays or high blood pressure, anemia and infertility, respectively. When lead displaces calcium, calcium’s ability to assist in the transmission of electrical impulses to the brain can be affected, meaning a person can have a hard time thinking or recalling information.
The most worrying thing about lead is that there is no amount of lead in the body that is truly safe. Compare this to many other elements and substances which can be beneficial in small amounts but poisonous in large quantities, such as iron or oxygen. Lead differs in that it is naturally toxic and poisonous, so there is no quantity in which it is beneficial for the body. It is always dangerous. Lead also accumulates in the body, so the effects of lead exposure worsen over time.
This is just a brief overview of why lead can be so dangerous to the human body and why it’s important to prioritize lead testing in Aspen, CO to avoid the risk of exposure and poisoning. Contact HealthSafe Inspections Inc. if you have further questions.
Categorised in: Lead Testing
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