There are (at least) two versions to every story...
Let's say that your kids are beyond the "eat everything faze" and they're playing with items (that include small leaded balls) that they've been playing with for weeks. Let's say that your child (a daughter if you have one) puts one of the small leaded (?) balls into her mouth (because she was a chipmunk in her other life). Then without warning (even to herself), she swallows said ball.
What to do?
Go to the hospital
because you have nothing else to do for four hours and you like their coffee or at the very least, contact your doctor.
If you're thinking, "why bother, she'll just pass it and all will be fine", you should know that the ball can enter the lungs or get caught in the esophagus without any symptoms. You don’t need to be a doctor to know that would not be good. In the meantime, make sure that the child doesn’t eat or drink anything (note the last time that they did) just in case they need to have the item surgically removed.
The only way to determine the location of the ball is via x-ray (or really strong magnet, just kidding). After the location of the ball is confirmed (in the stomach) all is pretty much textbook, assuming that you dissect your kids poo every day. If not, then there's nothing textbook about that.
If you're worried about the fact that the ball is or may be leaded, it is unlikely to breakdown in the 3-4 days (depends on the child) for the item to pass through their system.
Just thought that you should know.
P.S. Are you aware that x-rays are now all digitized and you don't even get to look at them, let alone take a picture
for your blog. I read that somewhere...
Time 11am on a rainy Friday. Scene, a bungalow in the country South of Ottawa
Enter Artemis, a Damsel, from Stage Left. Assumes a Southern Belle Drawl.
"Ah declare, without any doubt, that Ah have swallowed a magnet"
Parental Units rush in, alarum results!
"Certainly, you are mistaken Artemis, for there upon the carpet lies a magnet"
Artemis; "Not that one, I have not erred, see where I put it"
[Points to Throat]
Parental Units hastily pack offspring, offspring bits, books suitable for minors, lunches and diapers for what may be an extended stay at a house of care.
[sounds of rushing and packing]
A motor vehicle fades into the distance.
[Roar of engine and spitting of much gravel]
End of Scene One
Scene: Waiting Room of a non-descript institution. Various townsfolk, Gentry, curs and curmudgeons are milling about. Much reading of old "Elle" magazines, with sounds of computers in the background.
Enter Maxtor of Oshkosh, a Hunter.
Cheese sticks are eaten, trail mix unmixed, chocolate bits smeared at all accessible points.
[Sounds of gnawing and slurping]
Maxtor, now sated, rests in a bower made of large books
Four Hours to be Exact.
A Wizard enters, dressed in robes of white. He is from the Orient, sullen, and lacking of bedside manners. He waves his two-pronged wand and cries out;
"I decline to fish it out of her, so now you wait. Just like that guy in Windsor that swallowed the diamond."
"Wait up to four days, if no magnet is born before the rising sun, so shall you return here to pay additional homage to me!"
Parental Units: "In the meantime, we have just stuck her to the fridge door to keep her quiet."
End of Scene Two