They went from a 9 to a 5 (not the Dolly Parton song) and are still considered in the range of “just barely high enough to count as high but not high enough that we can actually do anything about it except monitor it,” which is really super frustrating.
Come on, medical profession!
I’ve been thinking about it and I have some theories as to what helped get his levels down, and they are after the jump.
Theory The First: We went to Portland for two weeks.
Nothing like removing yourself from the entire location of the possible problem to remedy things, yes?
Theory The Second: They weren’t really that high to begin with.
The problem with blood lead tests is that they are typically done via finger prick, which means there are endless opportunities for false positives. In fact, in my research I read that many medical professionals no longer recommend doing the finger prick test at all, since false positives are so common. At Huck’s follow-up blood test they had to use the finger prick again, as fat babies don’t really have visible veins, so it’s likely that even his second, lowered level is inaccurately high.
Theory The Third: The PUR Water Filtration System
The nice people at PUR sent me a sink filter attachment to use while we tried to get his levels down, and I think it may have made a difference! The PUR filter is one of the few water filters on the market that actually filters out lead, and old pipes are a terribly common place to find lead lurking about. Anyway, if nothing else, it made our water taste better. (NYC tap water tastes like carrots, isn’t that something?)
Theory The Fourth: Now that construction is over, the dust has finally settled.
Actually, this is very likely. Our building is very well maintained and there isn’t any peeling paint in our unit, but for about three weeks a few months ago the lobby was undergoing a major face lift. Layers upon layers of wall were peeled back and sanded down, and the air was thick with dusty dust for what felt like forever. It’s not hard to imagine that dust falling on our clothes and shoes and then making its way into our apartment, is it?
In any case, we move in two weeks. Two weeks! And I plan to wet mop that place right quick like, and then run all of Huck’s toys and clothes through the washing machine (the washing machine that lives IN OUR APARTMENT! yesssss!) the minute we unpack to make sure he’s safe from any nasty lead dusty particle person dude trying to infiltrate his cute little body.
Any other suggestions for me?