Asbestos in Your Home: The Hidden Killer
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a set of six minerals that is commonly used in various building purposes. Fibrous and naturally occurring, this material has been used for around 4,000 years now, with people using them then for different infrastructures, unknowing about the dangers that the material exposes them to. Since the expansion in mining of asbestos during the 19th century, asbestos has been sought after for production because:
1. It is quite affordable. Compared to other mineral sets that are used in electrical wiring production, asbestos is comparatively cheaper to use- all the more alluring to construction.
2. It has good sound absorption.
3. It is with tensile strength that is up to par. Builders require materials to have a good maximum capacity to manager tensile pressure, and asbestos presents a fair amount of tensile strength.
4. It can resist various damages such as heat (already fire, to a degree), electrical and chemical damages
But sadly, the cons outweigh the pros of using asbestos. Disregarding the advantages stated above, and considering that already in varying durations of exposure, be it a short or a long-term kind of exposure, asbestos is extremely hazardous to your health:
• Asbestos inhalation may cause:
– Asbestosis – which is a lung condition wherein the linings of the lungs become scarred, thicken, and will ultimately consequence in various degrees of difficulty in breathing because of fibrous tissue.
– Certain lung cancers, particularly Mesothelioma – which is a very aggressive kind of malignant cancer. It spreads not only in the linings of the lungs but also to the complete abdominal cavity. There are already subtypes of this, such as:
• Pleural – with regards to the lung space
• Peritoneal, – with regards to the abdominal cavity and
• Pericardial Mesothelioma – which affects already the heart area!
Now, bear in mind that asbestos is not only used in building different commercial infrastructures, but also in different elements in your home! That’s right, you can find asbestos in materials used to make:
• Cement shingles
• Wall elements
• Textured paint
• Spray-on decor
• Fire-proof materials such as stove pads and gloves
• Furnace ducts
• Metal piping’s and tubings
• And much, much more!
The chances of having asbestos in your home increases the older your house is. Especially if your house was built during the 1930’s or 50’s, asbestos was most probably used already in your home’s central insulation.
While new houses are least prone to having asbestos, nevertheless, these may be found in your very home! Have the walls, floorings, and your floor mats of your house checked. It is definitely better to be safe than sorry. Never touch suspected asbestos-containing materials in your home with your bare hands, and take care not to upset woven in materials that may have been damaged. Trauma in different ways such as tearing, pinching or slight prodding inflicted to such might cause the release of asbestos fibers that is very deadly to your health.
Get a specialized to manager the removal of asbestos in your home. Be it major or already minor repairs or total asbestos removal, you should leave it to a trained individual to ensure that your house is asbestos-free.