Asbestos can be defined as a type of highly durable mineral fiber found mostly in rocks and soil. Previously asbestos was added to a different type of product to strengthen them, helping in resistance from fire and provide heat insulation. Asbestos-containing materials can only be identified by a special type of microscope.
Asbestos can surely be hazardous to health and from recent studies, it is observed that breathing high levels of asbestos fibers can lead to an increased health risk such as-
- Mesothelioma, which is a very rare form of cancer generally found on the inner lining of the chest and that of the abdominal cavity.
- Lung cancer, and
- Asbestosis, where the lungs become scarred with the fibrous tissue. This can be a very serious long term disease, which certainly needs to be taken care of.
If there is an increase in the number of fibers inhaled, it can always result in the risk of mesothelioma and lung cancer. The chances of getting affected by lung cancer increase to a much higher level if you are a regular smoker. People suffering from asbestosis; have usually been exposed to asbestos for a pretty long time. Mostly these symptoms appear after about 20 to 30 years or more after the first exposure to asbestos. In general, the more you are exposed to asbestos, the more are the chances of developing harmful health effects.
People who are exposed to small amounts of asbestos in their daily day to day lives; do not develop these types of health issues. However, if asbestos is disturbed or deformed by any means it may release asbestos fibers, which when inhaled for a longer period of time can be dangerous. Asbestos products that are sawed, scraped, sanded into a powder, are more likely to be dangerous and might create health issues. For all these reasons, it is always recommended to repair or remove damaged asbestos-containing items from your house. The asbestos removal and the asbestos testing process should always be done with care.
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