Asbestos Exposure in the Home
Asbestos Exposure in the Home – Asbestos is an unwelcome pollutant. If inhaled or swallowed, asbestos fibers can damage the cells of the mesothelium and cause mesothelioma, an incurable form of cancer. While asbestos exposure is common among those who work in occupations like construction, factory, and shipyard, you can also be exposed to it in your own home. Based on data from the National Cancer Institute, about 5,000 everyday household products contain asbestos. Many of these items can pose serious exposure risks when they are in use, damaged or repaired.
Products containing asbestos are found throughout your home. It’s important to identify these items so you can either discontinue using them or use with caution. Let’s take a look at some of the popular household items.
Older Small Appliances
Asbestos can be found in older small appliances like crock pots, irons, coffee pots, popcorn poppers, and toasters. If these items ever need repair, they may release asbestos fibers during the disassembled process. Antique collectors who have old toasters and irons should use caution when handling them.
Asbestos is found in most hair dryers that were made before 1980. These handheld hair dryers are dangerous because they can blow asbestos fibers directly into your lungs. Some major companies that produced asbestos-containing hair dryers include:
- General Electric Company
- Gillette Co.
- Schick, Inc.
Other Common Household Items
Asbestos was a component of heating materials and was used in:
- Burner pads
- Electric blankets
- Fireplace Logs
- Fireproof gloves
- Gas fired decorative fireplace logs
- Ironing board covers
- Portable Dishwashers
- Portable heater
- Wood-burning stoves
Asbestos in Talc
Talc products such as baby powder, feminine hygiene, and cosmetics usually contain asbestos. According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer, asbestos-containing talcum powder is classified as carcinogenic. Using talcum powder contaminated with asbestos on genital areas may be associated with ovarian cancer.
Asbestos in Garden Products
Gardening can pose a serious threat to your health if you often use garden products that contain asbestos-contaminated vermiculite. Vermiculite is found in pesticides, potting mixes, composts, and fertilizers. In an August 2000 study conducted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), traces of asbestos were found in 17 out of 38 garden products. Even though the EPA believes the potential threat to consumers is low, the majority of consumer advocates disagree. They pointed out there are no warning labels on garden products for asbestos content. The EPA suggests using vermiculite substitutes such as sawdust, peat, bark or perlite. The agency also recommends that if you are going to use vermiculite, use it in a well-ventilated area, keep the material damp and avoid getting the dust on your clothes.
Asbestos Exposure When Traveling Abroad
New appliances in the United States do not contain asbestos. However, this may not be the case in other countries. If you are traveling to another country and plan to bring back a souvenir, it could pose an asbestos exposure hazard. Many countries in South America don’t have an asbestos ban or regulate the sale of asbestos-contaminated products.
Watch YouTube Video: 5 Household Items that Contained Asbestos. In this video, asbestos expert Ed Edinger reveals five common household items that contained asbestos.
Mesothelioma Lawyers in Sacramento
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Mesothelioma Lawyer. Asbestos exposure can pose a severe health problem. If you or a family member has been exposed to asbestos fibers, please call me at (916) 921-6400 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly legal advice.
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Asbestos Exposure in the Home: AutoAccident.com
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