This essay “Environmental Health Risk Assessment: Lead Poisoning” talks about one of the chemical components that lead to adverse health and has cost the lives of millions of people throughout the world. Lead is a malleable, dense, and low-melting metal…
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These components when brought together form our environment as we know it. Physical components deal with energy and shifting of energy from one form to another, chemical components deal with matter and all natural and man-made substances where as biological components deal with living things. In the present day, environmental risks and hazards are stemming from all three of these components including radioactive material, toxic chemical waste or contaminations within the body that lead to health hazards. This essay talks about one of the chemical components that lead to adverse health and has cost the lives of millions of people throughout the world. Hazardous Material: Lead is a malleable, dense, and low-melting metal that can be easily spotted in our daily lives and in the products that we use. Being extremely “toxic” the direct exposure to such metal could cause a variety of health hazards. If lead exists in the human blood stream for more than desired amount, it can cause adverse effects on the central nervous system, cardiac diseases and renal failure. Lead toxicity has resulted in complications in reproduction system. Lead has long been used in plumbing industry due to its capability to resist corrosion by water. It is also diluted in paints and makes a roofing material that can survive for ages despite of unpredictable weather conditions. Earlier in 1921 “tetraethyl lead”, a lead compound was mixed with gasoline because it prevented the car engines from ‘knocking’. However, this prevention came at the cost of air pollution leading to various health hazards. Lead is very dangerous for human beings if inhaled or ingested. It is capable of poisoning the internals of an individual leading to serious damages as mentioned above. Widely considered favorite material to be used in enamel and glass industry, lead is incorporated in the manufacture of picture tubes used in television. “Video display terminals” of computers have it in considerable amount. One benefit associated with lead is that it can prevent entry of radiations therefore the inside body of a light bulb constitutes lead glass. Frequent use of lead is in manufacturing of solder and bearings. Oil refineries and rubber processing industries also utilize lead in considerable quantities. Exposure and affects: Lead can be exposed in a number of ways causing it difficult for individuals to adopt any precautionary measure against its harmful affects. Presence of lead has been detected in contaminated water, hair dyes, cosmetics, daily household dirt, common soil, ceramics etc. But the most wide scale negative consequences result when lead based paint is used on walls and respective surroundings. Labor force carrying work activities in lead mines have the tendency to become prime victims of such poisoning. Water seeped through battered plumbing lines and fixtures might carry lead components that are injurious to health. Tinned food, when kept for prolonged periods, develops poisonous lead compounds. The risks associated with lead contact are more prevalent in children and infants in comparison to adults as the rate of lead absorption is phenomenal. It has been estimated that young children are likely to absorb lead almost forty to fifty percent through oral means.
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