Lead is a naturally occurring metal found in the earth’s crust. Though rarely used in isolation, lead was commonly utilized as an additive to improve the performance of existing materials. For residential homes, paint and plumbing lines are the most common materials containing lead. Today, these materials are produced without lead additives, however until 1978 the metal was routinely used in paint. A ban on lead solder was not implemented until 1986.
Thankfully, these restrictions have lead to a dramatic reduction in lead poisoning among children over the last few decades. From the late 70’s to the early 90’s, the ratefell by more than 80%.