Asbestos is a type of silicate that occurs naturally. It was a very popular and commonly used material in the 1940s up to the 1980s because of its heat and electrical resistance. Because of this, it was a top choice for home insulation.
Unfortunately, it was later found that asbestos caused serious health risk and was unsafe in buildings and homes. Asbestos is dangerous when inhaled and poses more risk for developing diseases when exposed for such a long period.
Experts consider all types of asbestos as dangerous. Even a small amount of exposure can trigger serious respiratory conditions such as mesothelioma. There are cases where many family members got mesothelioma from the workers’ clothing. Furthermore, asbestos-related diseases have latency periods. This is a time where no observable signs and symptoms are experienced by the person exposed to the element. The latency period usually lasts between ten to twenty years before you start feeling sick.
Here are some areas in your home that may contain asbestos:
- Parts of appliances
- Ceiling such as tile mastic, popcorn texture
- Electrical products like electrical panels and cloth wire insulation
- Floorings such as asphalt floor tiles, vinyl floor tiles, and linoleum
- Heating and cooling products
- Roofing products
- Vinyl wall
- Window glazing
How to find out if there is asbestos in your home?
It is difficult to identify asbestos without taking a sample and have it check in a laboratory. If you are currently living in an old house, consider the presence of asbestos. Call a professional asbestos removal team to handle the situation.
What you must do when there is asbestos in the house
Avoid from touching
When there is the presence of asbestos in the house, do not touch or move the material by yourself. Contain the area by closing it, especially if you have children in the household. Put a warning sign to secure the area away from people.
If you were exposed to the material, remove your clothing and place it in a plastic bag. Then take a proper bath to remove the fibres in your hair and the rest of the body. Do not attempt to clean or do simple repair by yourself. An untrained hand will cause more harm. Since asbestos is not seen with the naked eyes, you can easily release more fibres in the air.
The team will usually take a sample from your home and have it tested in a certified lab. You will have to wait for the result to decide what your next step would be.
Contact professional removal team.
Asbestos should be handled by a professional asbestos disposal team. Once you suspect there is asbestos in your home, immediately contact them and set a schedule. You may need to put your family members in a safer area to be extra careful.
When looking for a good removal team, make sure to look for those who are certified and licensed to do asbestos removal procedures. Those who are licensed have undergone proper training and handling of harmful materials.
Remove or repair
Once the result is out, and asbestos is present, your next option would be removing or repairing the area.
When the material has minimal damage, you have the option to repair it with the use of encapsulating asbestos. This special coating can protect you from asbestos exposure and prevent further damage to the material.
However, if the material can’t be repaired and the damage is extensive, removal is the best and only option. Some may decide to remove it themselves, but this is discouraged because poor handling can put many people in danger.
A highly trained professional team has the necessary tools, personal protective equipment, and equipment to deal with the damaged material. Aside from that, they know the proper way of disposing of asbestos that will not harm other people.
Get yourself checked
Get in touch with your physician if you suspect your health is compromised. This is particularly important if your family has been living in the house for years and unaware of the presence of asbestos. They might request an x-ray to check for any abnormalities in the lungs. Exposure to asbestos may take at least ten years to show any symptoms, so you might have to get yourself rechecked after a few years.
To Sum Up
When you suspect the presence of asbestos in your house, do not panic or worry. If possible, secure the contaminated area, put up a sign, and contact a licensed removal team immediately. Do not do any repair or removal on your own, especially if you have children. Let the professional handle it since they have the necessary tool and equipment, understand safety protocols, and dispose of the waste materials safely without endangering anyone.