Twin Cities Non-Profit Partners With Duluth Public Schools To Test Students For Lead

Symptoms are often misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder.

DULUTH, Minn. – A Twin Cities non-profit is partnering with Duluth Public Schools to help protect young people by testing them for lead poisoning.

The use of lead was banned in Minnesota more than 40 years ago.

However, studies have shown there are still a large number of older homes in the state, where lead can often be found.

There is a list of hot spots in Minnesota that have some of the highest concentrations of lead. Duluth is one of those hot spots.

Non-profit East Side Neighborhood Development Company visited Laura MacArthur Elementary in Duluth to test preschool students for lead poisoning.

With a simple prick, parents can find out within five days if their child has been diagnosed with high lead levels in their blood.

In Minnesota, it is recommended children under the age of one be tested.

But most people aren’t aware lead poisoning is still a huge problem.

A health educator says there are a few signs parents should start paying attention to.

“Some of the symptoms are hyperactivity and aggressive behavior,” said Laura Clouser. “Lead attacks the nervous system especially in kids under the age of six because their brain is still developing.”

Symptoms do not usually show up right away.

But when they do, these symptoms are often misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder.

If a child is shown to have high levels of lead, it is recommended to increase their intake of vitamin c and iron.

This will help the body to stop absorbing the lead as fast.

East Side has already visited Lowell elementary to test students for lead.

They will head to Meyers-Wilkins Elementary to continue their testing during school hours.

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