Prior to 1970, asbestos panels could be found in many homes. They were used in the walls and floors to act as both insulation and heat resistance. Asbestos panels were often put in place near furnaces and stoves, prime locations should a fire occur. And while asbestos surely helped many against fires, it posed other health risks. Nowadays, asbestos is off the market, and is only found in homes and buildings that have not been retrofitted.
There are many dangers resulting from asbestos exposure, all of which are very serious, even resulting in death. Discovering asbestos in your home is certainly no light matter.
The key thing to keep in mind, is that if asbestos has been in your home for many years, it is probably best not to disturb it. When an asbestos-containing product is disturbed, it can send many microscopic fibers into the air. When these fibers are inhaled, they can become lodged in a person’s lungs. It can take many years for symptoms produced by these lodged particles to become apparent.
If you find that there is asbestos in your home and it looks damaged, it is best to call in a professional. They will have all of the right tools and equipment to remove it safely without sending any of those particles into the air.
Exposure to asbestos can cause a variety of problems, some very serious. Asbestosis, for instance, causes inflammation of the lungs and difficulty breathing. Mesothelioma is a type of cancer specific to asbestos exposure that affects the sensitive linings of the heart, lungs or abdomen. Symptoms of mesothelioma include difficulty breathing, chest pain and fatigue. There may also be an accumulation of fluid in the tissues surrounding the lungs called a pleural effusion. This can cause pain and a feeling of shortness of breath.
Once symptoms of mesothelioma appear, treatment is often difficult because the disease has advanced to a later stage. While there are surgical options and other treatment methods, a cure for mesothelioma does not exist.
Asbestos exposure carries with it serious consequences. Protect yourself and your family by letting a professional deal with asbestos that may be in your home.