Why is Lead in Paint?
Lead is one of the basic elements represented by a symbol Pb, which is derived from the Latin word, Plumbum. Considered to be a heavy metal, lead is characterized as a soft, malleable, poor kind of metal. Lead varies in color depending on what state it is in. if it is freshly cut it exudes a bluish-white color. As it begins to get exposed to air, it gradually turns into a dull gray color. When dissolved to its liquid form, lead becomes a shiny chrome-silver luster. It was first discovered in Turkey during the 6400 BC and was found to have the highest atomic number among other stable elements. Today, this element is most commonly used in construction purposes as well as in batteries, bullets, solders and in radiation shields.
Many households and infrastructures of this modern age have been using paint to add color and vibrancy to its appearance. And it was discovered that one of the most common ingredient found in most paints are lead. Lead-based paints were found to cause detrimental effects to one’s health, especially if ingested or excessively exposed to. One of the most serious effects of lead is toxicity. It was discovered that lead paint can cause serious nervous system damage and can perpetuate late development among children. However, despite its ill effects, it is continually used because the properties of lead enhances and improves the quality of paint being produced. More so, paint is highly dependent on the compounds of lead to provide it with its color, such as the white lead paint or the yellow lead chromate. Another use of lead in paint is that it has the ability to neutralize acidic decomposition of products, keeping it tough, flexible and crack resistant for longer period of time.