What are the Health Hazards of Asbestos?

What are the Health Hazards of Asbestos?

Asbestos is a bundle of six minerals that occurs naturally. It can be drawn out into thin fibers and used in a number of industrial and construction purposes.

Asbestos gained popularity in the US in the 1800s and became a profitable material for various industries as it was very cheap and provided a number of benefits like resistance to heat, electricity and sound. Because of its non-conducting nature, it was mixed with plastics and cement to make durable and robust roofing, flooring and fireproofing.

In the late 1980s however, the use of asbestos in materials was banned because of its toxic nature. After 1987, new production of asbestos-based materials was strictly banned, while the previously made materials involving asbestos as the active component were allowed for use.

Here are the health concerns associated with asbestos that led to its ban in the 1980s.

Lung Cancer

Asbestos fibers are harmless when they’re left untouched. As soon as the asbestos fibers are disturbed, as in drilling or scraping, the fibers become airborne. Upon inhalation, these fibers can settle in the lungs and accumulate. Over a significant time period, these accumulated fibers can result in lung cancer.

The symptoms of lung cancer include:

  • Wheezing or coughing with blood
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hoarseness
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss or loss of appetite

If you experience any of these symptoms and are exposed to asbestos in your home or workplace, consult a doctor immediately.

Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a rare lung cancer that is caused by the exposure of asbestos. The tumor begins as small nodules on the abdomen or the lung’s lining. Mesothelioma is a serious illness whose symptoms don’t appear until it has spread and grown. This is typically when the cancer has developed into stage 3 or 4.

However, mesothelioma is associated with these symptoms:

  • Dry cough
  • Respiratory complications
  • Chest pain
  • Fever
  • Night sweats
  • Muscle weakness
  • Fatigue

Asbestosis

Another health complication associated with asbestos is Asbestosis, which is the inflammation of the lungs. People who are regularly exposed to asbestos can have scarring of their lung tissues from the inhalation of the asbestos fibers. This scarring then leads to irreversible breathing complications.

Symptoms of Asbestosis include:

  • Lung damage
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain

Asbestos is a life-threatening material that can cause serious health complications when ingested in great amounts.

Get in touch with ACI-TECH INC. for the abatement and removal of asbestos from your residential and commercial properties in Marcus Hook, PA. Contact us now for a quote.

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