When you think of metal poisoning, you probably think of lead. For years now, you have seen advertisements and warnings about lead-based paints and the dangers they can pose to children. Did you know though that lead is not the only heavy metal that poses a risk for children and adults alike? There are a few others that are just as dangerous if not more so. You need to know what these metals are and how they can affect your children to be able to keep them safe. Here are some of the signs of heavy metal poisoning in children and how you can keep your little ones safe.

Heavy Metals Explained

To protect children from heavy metal poisoning, it is essential first to understand what it is and how it can occur. The human body needs and absorbs certain heavy metals like iron, zinc, and copper. These metals in small amounts are part of a healthy body and perform specific functions.

Heavy metal toxicity (heavy metal poisoning), however, is when these heavy metals are found in the body in higher quantities than are necessary for their purpose. When the natural levels are increased by harmful exposure or illnesses, they can cause many life-threatening issues.

Other heavy metals can pose an immediate danger when present in the body at high levels. Metals like mercury, lead, cadmium, and arsenic, absorbed in large amounts can have fatal repercussions for the human body.

Due to a child’s size and developmental process, they are at a higher risk for severe complications from heavy metal toxicity. It is vital that one knows the signs and symptoms to look for and what to do if any of these symptoms are apparent.

Symptoms to Watch For

Recognizing the symptoms of heavy metal poisoning is crucial for early detection and subsequent treatment. When dealing with children and heavy metal toxicity, it may be challenging to recognize the cause right away. Difficulties arise because many of the symptoms can seem like many other illness complaints children have.

Common Symptoms:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea or Vomiting
  • Chills
  • Weakness
  • Stomach Pains or Aches
  • Lethargy

The problem with these common symptoms is that they are identical to stomach viruses in children, along with many other ailments they face. It is also important to remember that symptoms will vary for each person as well as the heavy metal they have been exposed to.

Heavy metal poisoning can have mental and developmental repercussions for children like; weekend bones, learning disorders, and behavioral disorders. Due to the severity of the effects of heavy metal poisoning on children, it is essential that precautionary steps are taken in time to avoid further illness.

Seeking Help in Time

Seeking help at the first signs of heavy metal poisoning is a vital part of the recovery process. The longer the metals are left building in a child’s body, the more damage they will cause. Seek medical care at the first signs of symptoms so that the doctor can start the proper treatments for the heavy metal toxicity in the blood. With any type of illness, it is better to err on the side of precaution, especially when it involves children.

Cite this article as:
Editorial Staff, "What Are Some of the Signs of Heavy Metal Poisoning in Children?," in Medicalopedia, August 30, 2019, [Permalink: https://www.medicalopedia.org/7737/what-are-some-of-the-signs-of-heavy-metal-poisoning-in-children/].