What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is the term used to describe a number of mineral fibers that are found in solid, rock formations. Because of their durability, solidified state, and resistance to fire and electricity, asbestos was used in the construction industry during the 1950s for ceiling tile make-up, boilers, sprayed coatings and insulation. It can easily be found in many buildings, hospitals, homes, and schools.
Many health studies reveal that high levels of asbestos inhalation can increase a person’s risk of cancer. But this risk is increased only when asbestos in not properly capsulated in a product. If the asbestos is enclosed, the asbestos is only a risk when the fibers are disturbed, released into the air, and inhaled.
Direct exposure to asbestos has led to:
- Mesothelioma cancer,
- Lung cancer,
- Laryngeal cancer,
- Ovarian cancer,
- Gastrointestinal cancer,
- Colorectal cancer,
- And may elevate the risk of developing throat, esophagus, kidney, and gallbladder cancers.
How Does Asbestos Cause Cancer?
Though asbestos use was banned in 1999 for use, it is still a common health concern to be watchful of. By now you’re probably wondering, how does asbestos cause cancer anyway? For 40 years, medical researchers were wondering that as well. Now, we have an answer.
Paradoxically, asbestos fibers are able to kill a body’s cancers cell. This process is called programmed cell necrosis. During programmed cell necrosis, however, a molecule is released that causes an inflammatory reaction and a release of factors and mutagens that promote tumor growth. Thus, when the carcinogenic asbestos composition is embedded in a person’s lungs, the healthy white blood cells are unable to do their job before they’re attacked by asbestos fibers.
Tips on How To Detect Asbestos
Ensuring a healthy home free of asbestos is a difficult task. Asbestos is both common and visually hard to identify because it is broadly mixed with other materials and substances. However, with these helpful tips on how to detect asbestos, you and your family can breathe clean air.
- Asbestos comes in all different shapes and sizes. Being aware of appearance is important. The three color types of asbestos are white (chrysotile), brown (amosite), and blue (crocidolite).
- Materials made with asbestos are in good condition and are not a health risk so long as they are not deteriorating or damaged. If you disturb the asbestos with DIY or home improvement projects, be alert! Even the smallest dose can be lethal.
- If you disturb asbestos and need the product removed, it’s necessary to hire a licensed contractor to handle the problem. A trained personnel will safely dispose of it in waste containers that prevent its release.
- Stay informed. Detecting asbestos can save lives. If you or a family member is hoping to work on DIY or home improvement project that involves your ceilings, windows, door panels, pipe insulation, floor tiles, roof sheeting, or gutters and downpipes, be sure to wear protective gloves, clothing, and eye goggles or a mask.
For more information about asbestos detection, contact your local Asbestos Abatement service provider.
Phil Kearnyis a Restoration expert and passionate writing about the latest in cleaning and restoration techniques. He recommends the professional services of Superior Cleaning and Restoration for the best professional restoration services in the industry.