The Effects of Long Term Asbestos Exposure

In the past, asbestos was used as a fairly common building material. Not only was it non-flammable, it was also an inexpensive, but extremely effective insulator. It was widely used in commercial and real estate, because of its low cost and safety ratings, that is, until it began to become connected with mesothelioma and other cancers. The National Cancer Institute reports that asbestos exposure is responsible for not only mesothelioma, but also other lung cancers, and many chronic lung diseases.

While asbestos itself is not toxic or inherently dangerous, when a person comes into contact repeatedly with asbestos fibers and breathes them in, this is when asbestos can do serious damage to the body. Because it was so widely used in construction applications, thousands of people were exposed to the fibers, breathed them in, or transported them home in the hair and clothes, where they were breathed in by their family members. As more and more fibers are breathed in, they collect in the lungs, actually causing extreme damage to the lining of the lungs.

A person may breathe in a few fibers one time and not experience any significant health problems because of it. It is under long term exposure that diseases like lung cancer and chronic respiratory problems begin to arise. The asbestos infiltrates the lining of the lung, causing serious inflammation, and developing tumors, which can spread throughout the body. One of the reasons that mesothelioma (the most common disease caused by asbestos exposure, and which is classified by tumors in the lining of different organs) is so deadly, is because of its rapid malignancy.

If asbestos is found in a building, it should be removed as quickly as possible. Even if it is only used as insulation, there is the possibility that fibers may become detached and enter the air system. Once the asbestos has been discovered, the very first step should be to call a professional asbestos removal company that is qualified to take care of this problem.

You may believe that you can simply remove the asbestos yourself, and replace the building material with a safer version. This however, is very dangerous. The fibers that asbestos releases into the air are very small and can easily adhere to clothes and hair, where they can then be breathed in later, even if you are far from the point of origin.

Asbestos should only be removed by a company that is qualified to do so and understands the procedure and the right safety precautions to take. At Brickley Environmental, we know the safest way to remove asbestos from a building and ensure that it is perfectly safe before those who live or work there return. Do not try to undertake this task on your own—let our team of professionals take care of the entire process.

About Brickley Environmental

Brickley Environmental creates safe-and-sound schools, homes, and buildings by designing and executing safe, cost-effective containment, abatement and removal solutions. We do it right the first time — making your profits predictable while supporting your ethical standards and reputation for excellence — and have served Southern California for over 30 years.