When it comes to asbestos, there’s generally quite a bit to worry about. For instance, did you know that the minerals that fall under the heading of “asbestos” contain many fibers? And that when these fibers are inhaled, they can cause all sorts of health problems, including cancer? Part of this problem is related to the fact that asbestos was used in numerous household and industrial products for decades, increasing public exposure. An example of a product containing asbestos is the electrical panel partition.
An electrical panel partition is used to keep electrical components safe and away from the possibility of damage. Asbestos was used in panel partitions because of its fantastic properties as an insulator. Asbestos is also highly flame retardant and heat resistant, making it the likely choice for electrical panel partitions at the time.
However, today, electrical panel partitions are no longer made from asbestos and are still effective as safe products. This is because in the 1970s, most asbestos products were banned and industries were barred from developing new products containing the material.
Even so, there are still asbestos-containing products out there, including electrical panel partitions. Some people just don’t know that certain items contain asbestos. Other times, it’s a lack of updating that keeps asbestos products in people’s homes. Whatever the reason, it is vital that you understand the significant danger of being near asbestos, even if it doesn’t seem dangerous.
What can exposure to asbestos do, exactly? It depends on the shape the asbestos is in during exposure. If it is in good condition, it is a relatively slim possibility that you will inhale any fibers. However, if the asbestos product is friable—meaning hand pressure can break it apart—then you have a problem. When asbestos is friable, it can easily be inhaled, causing a significant amount of exposure to the dangerous fibers.
This sort of exposure can lead to several different conditions, all of which are unpleasant. Asbestosis causes inflammation and scarring of the lungs. Pleural effusion causes the area surrounding the lungs to full with fluid. Several types of cancer can result as well including lung, stomach and rectal. Mesothelioma can also result. It is a very rare form of cancer that affects the membranes surrounding the lungs, heart and abdomen.
In short, asbestos exposure can lead to lifelong injury and permanent damage. If you think you have asbestos in your home, call a professional immediately for an evaluation.