Re: Lead Dangers
John, I think that the recent news of lead paint on toys made in China has caused a lot of what may be over reaction. Is lead a poison? Yes it is. Is it cumulative? Yes, but over time your system eliminates it. Is the lead on your hands from handling Christmas lights hazardous? Well, maybe, but I doubt it is a very large hazard. To be real about it, the principal danger is from lead containing paint where little children can chew on the paint. It has a slightly sweet taste, and that makes it even more dangerous. Lead affects the nervous system and is particularly dangerous to small children whose nervous systems are still developing.
Actually, it is a good idea to wash one's hands after handling minerals that contain lead . . . or arsenic, or bismuth, or copper, or . . . I think you get the idea. Almost anything is a poison, if we get enough of it. But, "the dose makes the poison". There are still lead pipes in use in some homes and communities and a lot of older homes (not newer ones) have copper pipes with lead-containing solder joints. Those are more of a problem than your lead minerals. So wash your hands and don't worry about your galena!
From Don Peck - December 18, 2007 at 07:51:42