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Lead Exposure and Behavior: Effects on Aggression and Risky Behavior among Children and Adolescents

February 2015

Jessica Reyes


The article studies groups of people exposed to lead in childhood and compares them against others who were not. The study finds that exposure to lead in childhood has a number of adverse effects beyond those found in early stages. These effects include teen pregnancy, teen delinquency, increased aggression throughout early adulthood and increased probability of committing a crime.

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Policy Implications

Many of the effects of early lead exposure discussed in this study are examples of behaviors that society typically deems detrimental. This information can be useful when considering actions that may result in increased lead exposure and may also be useful as a metric to study populations whom have seen recent exposure.

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