If you think that your old jewelry is harmless and perfectly safe, you may be wrong. Many pieces of vintage jewelry contain heavy metals and toxins that could prove hazardous when worn or exposed to your skin. Don’t underestimate the potential risks associated with costume and vintage jewelry found in circulation.
Vintage Lead Issues
When you wear old or vintage jewelry, you are increasing the potential for exposure to lead. Many old pieces of jewelry were crafted from lead or from composites containing lead. Lead that is in jewelry or accessory items can be absorbed through the skin, increasing the level of lead in the blood. Pewter is another metal found in many old accessory items that could pose a risk of lead exposure to wearers. Lead exposure leads to a number of debilitating health issues. According to Dickinson by Design, diamond experts, signs of lead exposure include mental delays, memory issues, aggression, and even infertility. The symptoms may emerge gradually, and could go undetected for quite some time. The only way to be sure if lead is present is to have a blood test from your primary physician.
Costume Jewelry Toxins
Lead is not the only risk when wearing vintage or older pieces of jewelry. There are a number of toxins and chemicals used in making many varieties of costume jewelry that have the potential of causing irritation, infection, and disease. Some older costume pieces, primarily from overseas, increase the risks of coming into contact with toxic materials and chemicals. That is not to say that buying contemporary costume jewelry is a safe alternative; even new items sold in big-chain retail venues were found to contain carcinogens and toxic chemicals.
Risky Pieces for Kids
The safest way to protect children from the toxins in heavy metals found in jewelry is to not provide these items to children in the first place. Cadmium, lead, and other heavy metals are found in some new and vintage children’s pieces. Children run risks of many emotional, mental, and physical problems when they are exposed to these metals; many youngsters are prone to putting things in their mouths. The safest route is to buy jewelry only from qualified retailers that are completely transparent about what the piece is made of, and its origin.
Other Hidden Hazards
Don’t overlook the paint on the face or surface of jewelry. According to Dickinson by Design (www.dbddiamonds.com), you should inspect any inlays or enamels used in making the piece. These may also contain lead and other chemicals that could prove toxic when worn against the skin. The skin is an organ, and being exposed to these toxins over time can cause some serious health issues and put wearers at risk for a number of serious medical conditions and afflictions.
Know the facts before buying vintage jewelry items, and use extreme care when choosing what to wear and expose your skin to. The signs of exposure or toxicity may be subtle, but over time can cause high-blood pressure, kidney damage, and infertility. Keep yourself safe by washing your hands thoroughly any time you handle vintage or costume jewelry. Evaluate what you have kept tucked away in your own jewelry box to ensure you are not hanging on to potentially hazardous metals and chemical toxins.
Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a "sponsored post." The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."