Leaded Gas Shrank IQ of Half of Americans.

   Lead; A neurotoxin, or destructive chemical toxic to humans and animals. It can be found in many areas, whether the soil, water, or air. Having the ability to destroy brain cells and be linked to many diseases, not even the smallest amount of it, is safe. In 1923, this chemical was added to gasoline to help engines run smoothly, despite its adverse effects on the brain and body. Although leaded gas was banned from the United States and New Zealand from the 1970s to the 1990s, it’s still used in some Middle Eastern and Asian countries. Studies show that the exposure of leaded gasoline has led to a decrease in the IQ of half of Americans.

    No matter how anyone can be exposed to lead. Not only can it be found in the environment, but lead can also be found in paint, dishes, and contaminated food or water. It can enter the bloodstream, whether it’s inhaled through dust or ingested or consumed through water. Through the bloodstream, the chemical can easily infiltrate the brain. Although a barrier in the brain can block out dangerous toxicants and pathogens, lead can still pass through.

    The chemical is hazardous, and any amount of it can result in health problems. Heart, brain, or blood, lead can gravelly affect the body. Exposure can increase the risk of disease, whether it be anemia, cardiovascular disease, heart disease, or kidney disease. The brain and mind are dangerously affected as well, with lead poisoning leading to reduced brain size. Due to this problem with the brain, a greater likelihood of mental illnesses, behavioral problems, learning problems, dementia, decreased hyperactivity, and loss of IQ have been present effects as well. Seizures, comas, and even death can occur through lead poisoning in rare cases.

    According to Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, approximately 170 million Americans, or half of the population of the United States, were exposed to high amounts of lead during their childhood. During this time, lead has taken 824 million IQ points. During the 1960s to 1970s, lead was at its highest, and those born around that time may have lost up to seven IQ points. Being more vulnerable to lead poisoning, young children are the most affected by the chemical’s damage to mental and physical development.

    Although a couple of IQ points may not seem like a lot, it depends on the person whose brain has been affected. To those with average to high IQ, these points may be insignificant. However, those with below-average IQ could be significantly afflicted. A drop in IQ points could lead to something as serious as an intellectual disability.

    Lead is highly dangerous, endangering and damaging the lives of those who are exposed to the chemical. Although anyone can come into contact with it, there are ways to avoid lead poisoning. Keeping a home clean and dust free, maintaining good hygiene when outdoors, and even eating well balanced meals, which can help with absorbing less lead, are simple, yet effective methods to steer clear of the chemical.