Asbestos is a mineral that is naturally occurring that was being mined and used in building and construction materials in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s. Today, asbestos has been proven to be highly dangerous can cause many health problems to those who are exposed to the material. The most common condition associated with asbestos exposure is a certain strain of cancer. Although the material is now being banned in many countries, many buildings still have materials with asbestos. According to statistics, it has been found that asbestos is the biggest cause of work-related deaths, especially in the UK. Mesothelioma cancer is the common killer disease emanating from asbestos.
Asbestos is very dangerous because it is a substance that you cannot see or smell. When it is inhaled for a prolonged time, it can cause severe disease or even death. Some of the health problems associated with asbestos include mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, asbestosis, and non-malignant pleural disease. You are at risk of being sick when you are exposed to asbestos especially when lots of the fibers are released into the environment. After you have been exposed to asbestos, it is very important to know how you can deal with the substance.
Symptoms of asbestos exposure
You will know that you have been exposed to asbestos when you realize that you are having shortness of breath, having a persistent cough, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, swelling of the face and neck, appetite and weight loss, and fatigue or amnesia.
What to do when you are exposed
When you are exposed to asbestos, there are things that you can do. First, you should consider reporting the asbestos exposure to your employer, landlord or look for an asbestos survey company to assess you. If you know the exact date and time of the exposure, you should give the details as well. The second thing that you can do is consulting your GP. When you are doing so, make sure to report any signs of ill-health symptoms. If you have a trade union, you should contact them for further advice. What you shouldn’t do is remain silent when you think that you are exposed to asbestos.
Why you need asbestos awareness training
Many people are being exposed to asbestos either directly or indirectly. Some people may be exposed to asbestos during their normal work. A good example includes workers who are in the building and construction industry. Such workers or employees should receive training. With proper training, they can identify asbestos-containing materials and knowledge on safe ways to stay around the materials. The training should be appropriate for the work as well as the role undertaken by individuals. Even if you are in buildings that are free from asbestos, it is just important to know and understand everything about asbestos. By knowing the substance, you will as well know how to stay safe.