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Asbestos is a mineral that’s incredibly harmful to anyone exposed to it. However, it has been used in an almost endless amount of products. While banned in the United States and a few other countries, most of the world still uses asbestos because it’s insulating and fire-resistant.

Harmful Effects

Asbestos has more than one harmful effect on you and your health. Overall, breathing in these fibers can lead to a decrease in the ability and function of your lungs, affecting your breathing. More drastically, it may also lead to death (especially when paired with long-term inhalation of the mineral).

  • It could cause mesothelioma. This is a tumor that grows on the tissue lining the inside of the lungs. It causes a lot of painful coughing.
  • Lung cancer is another potential issue that can arise. Asbestos fibers are known to lodge in the lower region of the lungs and cause cancer and other illnesses years after you breathe them in.
  • Asbestosis is a fibrotic lung disease and is caused by this mineral as well.
  • The lining of the chest cavity (the pleura) may change due to asbestos, causing further illness.
  • Because there is less blood flow to the lungs, heart enlargement may also be an issue.

How it Works

This mineral was used in an endless amount of products before it became illegal. One of the biggest uses was in the drywall and insulation of homes. Whether you’re living in a home with it. or worked on a job site with it, asbestos may be or may have been a part of your life.

When this material is broken up or disturbed in any way, the tiny fibers float in the air and are later inhaled. However, your chances of getting any illnesses from it depends on a few different factors.

  • The amount of time you were exposed
  • How much you were exposed to
  • How long it’s been since exposure
  • Your age when you were exposed
  • The size/type of fibers
  • Health history and smoking history

How You Can Stay Safe

If you’re living in an older home, it’s always a smart idea to get your home professionally checked for asbestos. This is especially the case if you are going to be remodeling. If your home does have this mineral, it’s possible to mitigate it! Luckily, here at Valley Restoration and Construction, we specialize in asbestos mitigation. Visit our homepage to learn more!