Do you have babies or toddlers in your family? Do you have a good water filter for your home drinking water? Especially one which can remove lead? While heavy metals like lead are poisonous to everyone, young children are particularly vulnerable. A recent study from British researchers discovered that the level of lead currently considered safe for children is still much too high.
These doctors and scientists from the University of Bristol Center for Child and Adolescent Health took blood samples from nearly 600 2-1/2 year old toddlers and followed their progress for 5 years. They discovered that children with 5 to 10 micrograms of lead per decilitre of blood read and wrote only half as well as normal children. These poisoned children also had SAT test scores 1/3 of a grade lower than the norm. What was shocking was that the safe level of lead in the major industrialized nations had long been set at 10 microgrammes per declitre of blood. In the US, this had been enforced by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention since 1991.
Just as shocking as the fact that babies and toddlers were much more susceptible to lead poisoning than previously thought was the fact that over a quarter of the young children in the British study suffered from this lead poisoning. Even more shocking is that the UK government had expended a great deal of effort to remove lead from their environment. The British, like the Americans, have removed lead from their paint, their plumbing and even their gasoline. And yet 27% of their kids still suffered from lead poisoning.
One possible source of this lead could be the home plumbing. While public water pipes are no longer made from lead and no longer use lead solder, there are still many old houses and apartments which still use lead pipes or solder containing lead. This lead will slowly leach into the drinking water of pregnant women, nursing mothers and the water used to make milk for babies. It will also leach into the water used for cooking food for the whole family. For families with babies and toddlers, replacing these old water pipes is the best possible solution, but often not practical because of the cost. Fortunately, there is a cheaper solution – reverse osmosis water filter system. This does not have to be a whole house water filter. The reason being that this kind of home water filtration purifies your drinking water before it enters your home, but it is your home’s plumbing that is poisoning your water supply.
You actually have two main solutions for home water filtration systems. The first is to install a point-of-use home water filter over each tap. Our water filters have been rated a Consumers Digest best buy. Also, the faucet water filters have been making good inroads into the market as affordable but effective home water filters. Remember to always ask if they are rated to remove lead. The reason is that most drinking water purifiers are made of carbon filters which are good at removing sediment, chlorine and organic poisons like herbicides and pesticides but not heavy metals. To remove heavy metals like lead or mercury, a carbon-based home water filter has to add a resin ion exchange unit. Unfortunately, most ion exchange units only remove certain metals – lead is common, and so is mercury, while some remove both.
A second solution used by many families with babies and toddlers is to buy water filter pitcher. You should also check if the cartridges replacement of the water filter pitcher will remove the lead. At the time of writing, all the replacement water filter cartridges sold at WaterFilterNet remove lead.
Do not limit yourself to purification of drinking water for your children. Remember that they may also swallow contaminated water when they brush their teeth or gargle their mouths, so remember to make them use the filtered drinking water instead. The same advice applies to pregnant women and nursing mothers – only use water that has been purified from your water filter system.
Because even low lead levels harm children, families with pregnant women, babies and toddlers need to be especially careful about keeping their environment free from lead. We showed that one source of this poisoning could come from your family’s drinking water, and also explained some ways to purify your drinking water using types of home water filters.