Asbestos was once a popular construction material. The naturally occurring mineral is cheap with insulating and fire-resistant properties, which make it perfect for buildings. However, studies have linked asbestos to some types of cancer, which is why it has been banned in over 50 countries.
While the use of asbestos remains legal within the United States, it is largely restricted. Regulations on its use have been rising, especially from the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA).
How can someone get exposed to asbestos?
You can be exposed to asbestos through inhaling if you are working with material that contains asbestos. Tiny fibers may be dispersed in the air, which may end up in your airways. These asbestos fibers can also get into your digestive tract if you consumed contaminated food or water.
How much exposure is harmful?
There is no safe exposure to asbestos, although more problems arise from prolonged contact. That’s why people in certain industries, like construction workers, who have frequent contact with asbestos throughout their jobs are more likely to develop asbestos-related illnesses later on.
If your line of work involves asbestos exposure, spotting the correct safety gear could go a long way in protecting you against the possible health risks.
What types of cancer can asbestos cause?
Asbestos has been closely linked to mesothelioma, a type of cancer that develops on the outer lining of body organs such as the lungs and stomach. It has also been linked to cancers of the ovary and larynx.
Keep in mind that it may take years for the effects of long-term asbestos exposure to show. Therefore, if your loved one has a medical condition or illness caused by exposure to asbestos at their workplace, it is necessary to take action that will ensure their rights are protected.