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The first statement is correct as lead is a highly intoxicated substance that can cause damage, especially in young children. There are many symptoms to lead poisoning which include: irritability, loss of appetite and nausea, headaches, unexplained abdominal pain, muscle aches, constipation, learning problems, short attention span, easily distracted, mental retardation and behaviour problems including aggression and impulsivity. As seen in the statement “this is disturbing because it has been well established that lead causes reduction in IQ scores, shortened concentration spans, hyperactivity and learning difficulties even when lead is present at very low levels in the blood” , it can be agreed that having lead in one’s system can cause damage to one’s concentration and learning abilities.
Research has shown that raised levels of lead can lower a child’s IQ by 4-5%.
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With regards to the second statement “painted toys with high lead levels have been found in major toy stores, as well as supermarkets, stationary stores, craft shops and craft/flea markets.
These toys were both locally produced and imported”, it can be agreed on as lead can be found in many old housing and furniture pieces. It is also of great urgency that when purchasing toys and furniture from garage sales, internet, second-hand-stores etc. that one takes precautions in checking that there is not any lead as some may contain lead based paint, a simple way of knowing if it does is to buy a test kit to determine if lead based paint is present.
For a baby and toddler unit I would consider:
* Non-breakable mirrors to learn to see themselves.
* Wooden cars for improving gross motor skills.
* Rattles to improve their movement.
* Plastic telephones to practise their speech.
* Simple puzzles to improve their knowledge.
* Large wooden beads to string to improve on their hand eye co-ordination.
* Balls to improve on gross motor skills
* Jungle gym to improve on their climbing abilities.
For children aged 3-6 years I would consider:
* Puppets to improve on their dramatic skills.
* Dress-up clothes to teach them the different type of career choices.
* Art materials to improve their creative minds.
* Books and puzzles to improve on their knowledge.
* Tricycles and bikes to improve their balancing skills.
* Jungle gyms to improve climbing.
* Sand pits to do sensory knowledge, (touch and feel)
The way in which one would ensure that equipment which you purchased does not cause lead poisoning is by reading the labels on the purchased equipment making sure there is no lead contained in it, try prevent buying used toys and equipment from garage sales, internet, second-hand-stores as many old items may contain lead based paint. It is also advised that children go for screening to make sure no lead is present. Children are encouraged to practice regular hand washing and to keep their hands and other objects away from their mouths.
Birth – 4 months: at this stage the child eats, sleeps, cries rolls off flat surfaces and wriggles. They are hazardous to burns, falls, sharp objects and suffocation.
4 – 12 months : at this stage the child grasps and moves around as well as putting objects in their mouths. They are hazardous to burns, poisoning, falls and drowning.
1 – 2 years : at this stage the child is able to investigate, climb, open doors and takes thing apart. They are hazardous to being in contact with gates, windows and doors as they might get injured with their investigation minds, fingers might get stuck in door etc. also water is hazardous as they may drown, traffic as they now know how to walk.
2 – 3 years: at this stage the child is interested in fires, tires to do things by themselves and gets very impatient. They are hazardous to dangerous objects and burns.
3 – 6 years: at this stage the child lies to explore, climb, riding tricycles, rough games. They are hazardous to poisons and burns, falls and injuries, drowning and traffic.
6 – 10 years : at this stage the child like spending time away from home, active sports. They are hazardous to firearms, injuries from sports and drowning.
Through this we can conclude that every one of these ages is vital as the developmental level can affect children’s safety and health and that they should never be left unsupervised and parents should know what to do in an emergency.
Air-borne transmission include in illnesses such as chickenpox, common cold, fifth disease, measles, mumps and tuberculosis. The measures one would take in these instances would be to identify the child with the illness and send them home, with antibiotics, the child should not be allowed to return to school until fully recovered. All these illnesses and the limitations of the spread apply to all age groups ( birth to grade 3)
The faecal-oral route include cholera, rotavirus and ascariasis, can be spread through water, food and poor sewage, to limit the infection one needs to make sure water is clean, food is cooked properly and sewage is flushed away. Food only obtains to children who can eat solid foods, thus not referring to birth to 12 months.
Direct and indirect include illnesses such as pinkeye, hand foot and mouth disease, cold sores, lice and ring worms. The measures one would take in these instances would be pinkeye: antibiotic treatment and sent home, continuous hand washing, hand foot and mouth disease sent home for several days and continuous hand washing. A cold sore child can stay at school but must was hands frequently. Lice, child should be sent home until lice is gone, hair must be washed with medicated shampoo. Ring worms, child should stay away from gyms, pools or activities where can be exposed and should use a fungal ointment. These limitations would all be considered to all age groups ( birth to grade 3 ) however gyms, pools etc would only obtain to the older children grade 1 – 3.
Blood illnesses include AIDS and hepatitis B, the measures one would take for AIDS is excluding child of 0-5, and prevent anyone from touching the child blood, handle blood with surgical gloves, seal up blood infected items and disinfect surfaces with bleach.
Hepatitis B one would also use precautions when handling blood and frequent hand wash is advised.
Marotz, L, 2009. Health, safety and nutrition for the young child. 76de uitgawe. Clifton park, NY: Thomason Delmar Learning
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