Moms dealing with elevated lead levels - Page 16 - Mothering Forums

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Old 11-18-2007, 02:44 PM
 
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hi mommas,

we had the city codes officer come into our house on wednesday, our landlord came shortly after the codes officer arrived so he could find out what he needed to do about the house. my dd tested with a level of 23, ok, we are freaking out about the potential long term damage to her little brain. can you believe that this landlord had the nerve to sit in MY living room and start to cry because of how much money it will cost him to fix HIS OWN property so that it is liveable? I had to walk outside and stay there, cuz i was seriously losing my mind. we are fighting with him about refunding us some rent money to help us defray the cost of moving, finding another place, etc. the HD has said we don't HAVE to move, but our dd should not be here while the repairs are taking place, and since this guy wants to do the bare minimum and we don't have a place we can stick our dd while the work is being done...she is 13 months old, and still breastfeeding, if she goes we all go. the landlord called on friday and gave us an offer for what works out to be almost all the rent money we have paid him (we have only lived here since May), but he wanted us to sign a release that we would never come after him for more in the future. he is hopeless...of course we told him no. gotta run, more later
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Old 11-18-2007, 04:05 PM
 
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Chioma - I'm so sorry. Can you talk to a lawyer? Your instincts are right on, do not sign anything your landlord gives you and do not release him from any responsibility. Is it possible to arrange for the HD to deal with the landlord? In NY when it comes to lead poisoning, the landlord is going to have to deal with the city and it's not just up to the individual tenant to negotiate. If the city is expecting you to handle the whole thing, I really think a lawyer who specializes in this kind of situation could be a huge help. My understanding of landlord-tenant law is that if the property is not liveable the landlord must pay for you to live elsewhere, whether that means a motel or another rental property.

Document everything - if your daughter ends up with delays, you've got a legal case here.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:02 PM
 
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It was actually a public health nurse that tested my son for lead that told me blood lead levels show only what has entered the bloodstream in the past 30 days. (This was not the DAN doctor).

What is the agenda of DAN doctors?

Does anyone have a sense of the efficacy of hair vs. urine testing, or even of testing his baby hair?

Can anyone please refer me to some good unbiased site that look at the risks and benefits of chelation therapy?



I keep asking this and not coming up with anything. I'm really trying to inform myself before my son's next doctor appointment. Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:31 PM
 
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Hi harmonymama,

Are you subscribed to the Autism-Mercury Yahoo group?? They are extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of chelation, testing, DAN doctors, etc. Can't say they are unbiased, but they are certainly an experienced and diverse group of people with a LOT of information to share.

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Old 11-18-2007, 09:46 PM
 
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Originally Posted by harmonymama View Post
It was actually a public health nurse that tested my son for lead that told me blood lead levels show only what has entered the bloodstream in the past 30 days. (This was not the DAN doctor).

What is the agenda of DAN doctors?

Does anyone have a sense of the efficacy of hair vs. urine testing, or even of testing his baby hair?

Can anyone please refer me to some good unbiased site that look at the risks and benefits of chelation therapy?
Sorry to blame your doc then; nurses aren't infallible either!

Regarding agendas, DAN doctors generally attribute autism and a range of behavioral irregularities to vaccine reactions and heavy metal toxicity. These conclusions are controversial to say the least. They tend to believe that biomedical interventions "cure" such conditions and are particularly fond of recommending chelation as a magic bullet. For a DAN doctor to find chelation an appropriate remedy for a BLL of 4 is testament to ideology overcoming common sense, and I would consider such a recommendation to be agenda-driven. Obviously DAN doctors are very popular on MDC and quite honestly I don't wish to divert the conversation to a wrangle over DAN and vaccines. As the mainstream medical community recognizes lead exposure and poisoning as a severe problem, I personally see no particular need to seek alternative practitioners given the level of attention, seriousness, and respect given this issue by mainstream medicine.

Neither hair nor urine testing is particularly accurate or helpful in determining the level of lead in the body.

Chelation is controversial. You're not going to find much that you can't point a finger at for being biased one way or another. I hope that the articles below can at least establish for you that chelation is the protocol for lead poisoning only when blood lead levels are much, much higher than your son's (generally a BLL of 45 or over). I'm not interested in scaring people, so I'm not going into this here, but if you want to know the worst of what chelation can do, you can google chelation and death. Bottom line, chelation is something you only want to do when necessary, and then under the care of a reputable board-certified physician.

From the New England Journal of Medicine:

http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/344/19/1421

This article appeared in the Harvard Reviews of Pharmacoepidemiology:

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/Organiza.../chelation.htm

The AAP policy statement as printed in the journal Pediatrics:

http://aappolicy.aappublications.org...ics;116/4/1036
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Old 11-19-2007, 12:52 AM
 
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So blood is better than hair???????? Ohhh I am soooo confused. Which one should I do????????????:
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:19 AM
 
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So blood is better than hair???????? Ohhh I am soooo confused. Which one should I do????????????:
Have you ever tried to have blood drawn? My daughter made THAT decision FOR me.

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Old 11-19-2007, 02:10 AM
 
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So blood is better than hair???????? Ohhh I am soooo confused. Which one should I do????????????:
Blood draw. Venous, not fingerprick. There is just no controversy about what test is most accurate and useful.
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Old 11-19-2007, 02:54 AM
 
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From my understanding, blood is the most accurate test of current/recent lead exposure. Hair and/or urine can measure (though imperfectly) lead stored from past exposure.
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Old 11-19-2007, 12:25 PM
 
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hey mamas!! so i dont know if you remember or not but my dd had high lead levels a year ago and we did eveything we could, even hired a lead inspector and he found nothing in our house.but her levels werent going down.
then from something i heard somewhere and just an odd gut feeling i got rid of all our MELISSA AND DOUG TOYS. that is the only thing i changed and removed from our home. we went back in and her lead level dropped to 3 she was in the clear!!! i thought maybe it was just a coincidence but then my friend's dd had high lead levels, she too only removed melissa and doug toys from her home and VOILA! lead levels dropped to the safe/normal range.
NOW, a diferent friend of mine went to her local tv station b/c they had an expensive lead testing machine and she brought a few toys including MELISSA AND DOUG and what do you know- trace amounts of lead were found!
now knowing it's not just a coincidence I felt like I should let everyone know!!!

Waldorf mama to Autumn DD 9/05 and my Spring DD 4/08 Winter baby due 2/11
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Old 11-19-2007, 03:54 PM
 
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Wow! I was just about to give a little Melissa and Doug puzzle to my neice specifically b/c I thought we'd be in ther clear on lead. Thanks for the info. Makes you feel like we'd all just be better off toy-free .
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Old 11-19-2007, 04:09 PM
 
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hey mamas, we are doing pretty well over here after being stuck at a lead level of 13 for 3 months it was 8 last month!! i am so excited! we go next to test again. hope everyone is doing well
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:18 PM
 
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brkylnmomma, thanks for the reply. we were actually talking to an attorney from legal aid, as we have no money for a private attorney. she told me to take anything he offered, but don't sign away any rights, as our house wasn't condemned, and the landlord had never produced a written lease, which he promised my dh he would do as soon as he received the deposit. the HD is sitting on the fence, they are the ones who told us that they recommend that we aren't here while remediation takes place....and since the codes enforcement officer didn't see that the place was so bad that it needed to be condemned by the city we are in a rather gray area. my husband did call a cousin of his who is an attorney in New Jersey, and he seems to think that we have a good case against our landlord. he called and left the guy a message the other day, next thing we know the landlord was at the door with a check for the amount of rent we have paid so far, along with a letter telling us that he always tries to "respond generously when a disagreement arises with a tenent." we are not cashing the check yet, but at least now he knows that we have somebody on our side.
all the legal issues aside, we are trying to focus on the children, dd in particular. we got cellular defense the other day, the lady at the natural foods store said to start with one drop a day and gradually build up to three a day. anybody have any experience with this product? i am trying my best with their diet, but just realized that the reason both twins have had eczema is probably from dairy in my diet, so have eliminated now for two weeks and both their skins have cleared considerably.
getting through another day the best i can, thanks for being here
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Old 11-19-2007, 09:23 PM
 
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On the issue of what test to perform:

Quote:
If the question of current lead poisoning arises, however, the only reliable way to make a diagnosis is with a blood lead measurement. Hair lead concentration gives no useful information and should not be performed.46 Radiograph fluorescence measurement of lead in bone is available in a few research centers and has been used in children as young as 11 years with acceptable validity for research purposes,47 but it has no clinical utility as yet.
http://pediatrics.aappublications.or...ull/116/4/1036

Good to hear from you, Chioma - will be back later.
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Old 11-20-2007, 12:38 AM
 
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brklyn mama, there are other physicians than just the allopathic doctors. different ones like different tests, because the level of contaminants being excreted tells them something else about how the body is handling the lead, not just the blood lead level. i have read extensively about hair testing, but don't have the money. the most frustrating thing to me about the blood lead level was wondering where else the lead is lodged, which is not currently circulating. i am always saying that it's knit in her bones.
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Old 11-20-2007, 09:14 AM
 
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hey mamas!! so i dont know if you remember or not but my dd had high lead levels a year ago and we did eveything we could, even hired a lead inspector and he found nothing in our house.but her levels werent going down.
then from something i heard somewhere and just an odd gut feeling i got rid of all our MELISSA AND DOUG TOYS. that is the only thing i changed and removed from our home. we went back in and her lead level dropped to 3 she was in the clear!!! i thought maybe it was just a coincidence but then my friend's dd had high lead levels, she too only removed melissa and doug toys from her home and VOILA! lead levels dropped to the safe/normal range.
NOW, a diferent friend of mine went to her local tv station b/c they had an expensive lead testing machine and she brought a few toys including MELISSA AND DOUG and what do you know- trace amounts of lead were found!
now knowing it's not just a coincidence I felt like I should let everyone know!!!
I'm sorry, but you could give us any other information (like maybe which local TV station)? I have been in contact with the Melissa & Doug company several times, as have other mamas that I've come across on the internet, and they swear that their toys are rigorously tested and lead paint free. Before I, and every other M&D-buying Mama on this board, totally freak out, it'd be nice to have some corroboration.

Not trying to flame, not trying to be snippy. I apologize in advance. I'm being observed by the assistant superintendent today, so I'm a little on edge.

Stacey teaching teens to read & write... Daddy plays ska, DD1 (7/05) loves trees & princesses, & DD2 (3/10) loves mommy-milk! Please get your kids tested for lead.
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Old 11-20-2007, 09:55 AM
 
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check out my posts in mindful home management and family safety, theres links in those and other mamas posting about how bad m&d is. its bad enough they are MIC to begin with. don't shoot the messenger!

im sorry if i too sound snippy, its just that a lot of ppl wouldn't listen months ago when i first told them about m&d,they wanted to continue buying their cheap MIC,slave labor toys instead of nice family made ones. i just can not fathom allowing anything being questioned by anyone in my own home,kwim? i would always much rather be safe than sorry.
but if ppl want to ignore my advice and my story again so be it. take it how you will. i only share it to try and save another family from what we have had to go through

Waldorf mama to Autumn DD 9/05 and my Spring DD 4/08 Winter baby due 2/11
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:06 AM
 
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Old 11-20-2007, 06:15 PM
 
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What type pf stain/paint is safe to paint a wood table with? We got an unfinished one from Ikea and was wondering what we should stain/cover it with? Also we have a painted/possibly lead one from Kmart, should I strip it and redo it, if so with what?
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Old 11-20-2007, 07:37 PM
 
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I thought this might be the best place to post my question. We have four children...15, 8 (a diehard thubsucker), 4, and 10 mos. We bought this 100 yr old house 1 year ago. I'm sure we signed a lead release form but didn't pay any attention. We're not originally from the NE and so never gave lead a second thought (never really heard much about it before living here).
So at our last checkup, ds2 and dd2 had the finger prick test. They came back high at 16 and 16.5. They did a veinous blood test and we're waiting on the results. I am trying not to freak out but find myself frequently on the verge of tears.
We have recieved a govt grant to have our house abated for lead. They need to replace windows, cover the bedroom floors, and repaint the outside and rebuild the front porch. It was declared a hazard back in July. We're still waiting on the company to come do the job!! Now that it's cold here we were thinking of waiting to have them replace the windows until Spring but I'm in a panic about the kids lead levels. Would you wait or have them start as soon as they can (meaning it could be december before they start the work).
I was also wondering what if any natural remedies anyone here has successfully used to decrease the lead levels in their little ones? Can I affect my babie's level by using something myself and therefore treating her via her breastmilk?
I have spent the last few years changing the way we live to lessen the amount of chemicals that we're exposed to. I feel so undone!! And most of all guilty and heartsick over my poor kids futures!!! I'm literally loosing sleep over this. I wish we could sell our house. Unfortunately, we're stuck.:
Thanks for listening and thanks for the help.
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:17 PM
 
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brkylnmomma, thanks for the reply. we were actually talking to an attorney from legal aid, as we have no money for a private attorney. she told me to take anything he offered, but don't sign away any rights, as our house wasn't condemned, and the landlord had never produced a written lease, which he promised my dh he would do as soon as he received the deposit. the HD is sitting on the fence, they are the ones who told us that they recommend that we aren't here while remediation takes place....and since the codes enforcement officer didn't see that the place was so bad that it needed to be condemned by the city we are in a rather gray area. my husband did call a cousin of his who is an attorney in New Jersey, and he seems to think that we have a good case against our landlord. he called and left the guy a message the other day, next thing we know the landlord was at the door with a check for the amount of rent we have paid so far, along with a letter telling us that he always tries to "respond generously when a disagreement arises with a tenent." we are not cashing the check yet, but at least now he knows that we have somebody on our side.
all the legal issues aside, we are trying to focus on the children, dd in particular. we got cellular defense the other day, the lady at the natural foods store said to start with one drop a day and gradually build up to three a day. anybody have any experience with this product? i am trying my best with their diet, but just realized that the reason both twins have had eczema is probably from dairy in my diet, so have eliminated now for two weeks and both their skins have cleared considerably.
getting through another day the best i can, thanks for being here
It is great that you are talking to Legal Aid and have a lawyer in the family. You might search out tenants' rights groups as well. Does the landlord's check indicate that cashing it means agreeing with his offer (i.e. does it say "in full and final repayment of any obligation to tenant" or whatnot)? If it's just a check with nothing else written on it, you should check with your Legal Aid contact, but I would think you could go ahead and cash it and keep right on pressing for more.

Is there a relative you and the kids can stay with while you search out new housing, etc? I hope you can get them out of the poisoned environment as soon as possible. Or might the HD immediately pay for, at the very least, a HEPA vac that can do a preliminary clean-up? Earlier in this thread there are stories from mothers who got a lot of government help to lead-clean, there might be something that would help you out.

I don't know anything about cellular defense, sorry. You do want to get your DD on iron and calcium supplements, though...
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:25 PM
 
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brklyn mama, there are other physicians than just the allopathic doctors. different ones like different tests, because the level of contaminants being excreted tells them something else about how the body is handling the lead, not just the blood lead level. i have read extensively about hair testing, but don't have the money. the most frustrating thing to me about the blood lead level was wondering where else the lead is lodged, which is not currently circulating. i am always saying that it's knit in her bones.
Yeah, I'm aware of the alternative practitioners, that's why I was commenting on DAN. To each their own. I have no bone to pick with complementary approaches, but it's my hope that someone seeking out a homeopath or naturopath or what-have-you is not going to forgo approaches that have a proven track record, embark on dangerous therapies that do not, or let themselves be terrified by opinions that are not backed up by peer-reviewed research. I can appreciate your desire to know more fully what level of lead is present in your daughter's body (I feel the same way) but frankly a hair test is not going to be a reliable indicator as to what's in her bones.
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:38 PM
 
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Milkmommie - so sorry you are dealing with this. A lot of the questions you are asking have been discussed on this thread. Take a deep breath and go back to the beginning....

Dandecobb - congrats on the great improvement in levels!

CounterGOPI - thanks for the M&D info. I looked at all the threads you linked. As far as hard evidence, so far we have a link to the TV station, but no news report as yet, and we have a European recall of one toy from 2006. That's not a lot of verification, but it's enough to get me to segregate our M&D toys tonight and watch carefully to hear more!
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Old 11-21-2007, 12:35 AM
 
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I thought this might be the best place to post my question. We have four children...15, 8 (a diehard thubsucker), 4, and 10 mos. We bought this 100 yr old house 1 year ago. I'm sure we signed a lead release form but didn't pay any attention. We're not originally from the NE and so never gave lead a second thought (never really heard much about it before living here).
So at our last checkup, ds2 and dd2 had the finger prick test. They came back high at 16 and 16.5. They did a veinous blood test and we're waiting on the results. I am trying not to freak out but find myself frequently on the verge of tears.
We have recieved a govt grant to have our house abated for lead. They need to replace windows, cover the bedroom floors, and repaint the outside and rebuild the front porch. It was declared a hazard back in July. We're still waiting on the company to come do the job!! Now that it's cold here we were thinking of waiting to have them replace the windows until Spring but I'm in a panic about the kids lead levels. Would you wait or have them start as soon as they can (meaning it could be december before they start the work).
I was also wondering what if any natural remedies anyone here has successfully used to decrease the lead levels in their little ones? Can I affect my babie's level by using something myself and therefore treating her via her breastmilk?
I have spent the last few years changing the way we live to lessen the amount of chemicals that we're exposed to. I feel so undone!! And most of all guilty and heartsick over my poor kids futures!!! I'm literally loosing sleep over this. I wish we could sell our house. Unfortunately, we're stuck.:
Thanks for listening and thanks for the help.
Hi Milkmommie! My dd's level was 13.1 a year ago. 3 months later it was 10. At her 18 month WBV it was 6.1. We had her tested at 2 years and we never got a phone call, so I am assuming it is less than 4 now. (Yes, I am going to call to find out, eventually.) Like you, we live in an older home. (built before the 1800's) Thankfully, we don't have lead IN our home, but an old shed in our yard is full of it. Also, the neighbors demolished their garage and it was painted. I am assuming a lot of the dust blew into our house from that, and drug in on our shoes.

What made my dd's level drop significantly was imposing a no shoes rule in the house. Yes, its inconvienent, but it helped. That could help if your porch is pealing paint. I also bit the bullet and bought a $600 dyson vacuum. I vacuum the floors daily with it. Also, mopping floors with cascade helps bind with the lead and make it less absorbable. Its all a pain to do, but I can notice such a difference in her. She sleeps so much better, eats some now, and is much less irritable. I thought she was just a beast of a child, and now I feel bad since she really is a sweet girl when she isn't poisoned with lead. :

I know how heartbreaking it is. You think you found the perfect house... And then find out it isn't. Like you, we are stuck in the area for awhile. Give me a call sometime if you want to chat about it!
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Old 11-21-2007, 01:12 PM
 
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My dd just tested at a level 3. We currently live in a new building, she doesn't have any of the recalled toys (although she does have M&D toys). She does put everything in her mouth and has been anemic in the past. We are moving to a 1920's house at the end of January, so I am worried that her levels will increase. Plus I have a baby who will be crawling by the time we move in.

Although all of the woodwork in the house was stripped and repainted by the prior owners there is flaking paint on the windows and sills, which my dh is currently sanding and painting (carefully and according to the epa guidelines).

Can anyone recommend a hepa vacuum? I think it will really help.
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Old 11-22-2007, 12:29 AM
 
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You can read the thread for hepa vac recs. Cascade is really toxic. I posted a link somewhere in this monster of a thread, of a study that showed that non-toxic cleaning with rinsing and drying (multiple wipes) did as good as the phosphate cleaners. I see your point about using it, but I am always afraid that it trades one toxin for another if my rinsing isnt perfect. Also about staying in a house needing repair, shut all windows, do not open them, lead-clean all sills and paint bonding primer on any visible imperfections in the house.

Brklyn Mama, I do agree that allopathic tests are good ones. But there is tons of research about the negative effects of even smaller amounts of lead, and allopathic medicine offers NO treatment for a lead level under 30. We couldn't even get a ped interested in the subject, even though there is plenty of research indicating it's seriousness. There aren't- oops, baby meltdown, later . . .
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Old 11-23-2007, 07:50 PM
 
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BrklynMama and others,
the landlord actually wrote in the memo section of the check "return rent and sec. deposit", so i think that it would be safe to cash it, but the attorney cousin told us to hold onto it until he gives us to ok, which i think is going to be after we have most if not all of our stuff out of here. we are going to stay with a guardian angel who we kept meeting at the mall who would always stop to admire our children. we had exchanged phone numbers months ago, she called right after we found out about our predicament, she told us we are welcome to stay with her and her dh until we find a better place. we are not having much luck, every place we are seeing is in older buildings, and i am so paranoid i won't even consider another old place again. the HD said they have a HEPA vac we could borrow, but it is out right now, there is a waiting list for it...we will be out of here before they can get it to us. if everything goes according to plan we should be out of here by the end of next week. i don't know what to do about all our stuff that i think is contaminated, my dh is all for chucking everything, but we can't start all over from scratch.
we are also waiting on results from bloodwork that was taken last friday, hoping it will be back by monday.
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Old 11-23-2007, 07:59 PM
 
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For what it's worth -

Quote:
2) Masters and Coplan have reported (International Journal of Environmental Studies, in press) that silicofluorides in fluoridated drinking water increased levels of lead in children's blood, a risk factor that predicts higher crime rates, ADD and learning disabilities.


http://www.fluoridealert.org/pmullenix.htm
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Old 11-30-2007, 02:42 AM
 
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Well, I guess I will try the blood test first. The benefit is that I can test her iron as well, but I'm sure not looking forward to it. I have been debating taking her to a doc for a well checkup to get their opionion(specifically Dr. Sear's), but then again I was thinking of an ND. I wish the answers were clear to health questions. Especially when I myself have health issues, it's so hard to wrap my mind around everything.
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Old 11-30-2007, 02:42 AM
 
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Forgot to see if anyone has any info on safely stripping and repainting possibly tainted table and chairs? What's the best way and best products to use???
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