Asbestos is a natural occurring mineral that has the strength of steel and could be added to hundreds of common building materials to make them fire resistant, improve insulation qualities, and is resistant to chemical corrosion.
There are many products that contain asbestos fibers. Here is a list of some of the most common products that are found to contain asbestos fibers.
- Floor Tile & Adhesives
- Linoleum Sheet Vinyl
- Wall & Ceiling Textures
- Drywall & Plaster
- Duct & Pipe insulation
- Exterior Siding
- Roofing Shingles
- Window & Door Caulking
There are four different types of deadly diseases that asbestos causes (described below). These diseases do not affect you immediately but instead they take many years. Usually when one is diagnosed it is too late to do anything about it. Asbestosis – scarring of the lung which can be fatal and made many times worse if the person exposed is a smoker. Can cause shortness of breath and has a latency of 15 – 20 years. Mesothelioma – cancer of the lung and abdominal lining is fatal with no known cure and can be caused with low exposures to asbestos fibers. It can cause difficulty breathing, chest pains and has a latency of 30 – 40 years. Lung Cancer – the most common of asbestos disease, smoking increases the risk and has a latency of 15 – 20 years. Pleural Thickening – usually cause by heavy exposure to asbestos, causes breathlessness, chest pain, coughing, sneezing, tiredness, low grade fever, and strain on the heart, with a latency of 15+ years.
Facts Lead-base paint was used in more then 38 million homes until it was banned from residential use in 1978. Structures built before 1978 are likely to contained lead base paint. Lead-base paint was also used on old toys and furniture. As lead paint ages, it becomes brittle and can chip or crumble into dust. Lead-base paint was commonly used on doors, windows, and their frame work. The movement and rubbing of lead-base painted surfaces can create a fine dust that is invisible to the eye and can endanger you and your family.
Health Issues Exposure to lead-paint dust or chips can cause serious health problems. Children and pregnant women are at higher risk. Lead can affect children’s brains and developing nervous system, causing reduced IQ, learning disabilities, and behavioral problems. If you feel that your children may have been exposed to lead-based paint you should have a blood test to see if they have elevated blood levels. All children one and two years of age, or who may have been exposed, should be tested. Other children under six years of age, or who may have been exposed, should be tested if their doctors think they are at risk. Pregnant woman that have high blood levels of lead can pass it to the baby through the placenta or through breast milk.
Having Renovation Done If you live in or own an older home, you need to know how to protect yourself and others. When having renovation performed by a Contractor be sure that they are RRP (Renovation, Repair, and Painting) certified. They will need to assume that your paint is lead based or have it tested by a Certified Lead Testing Company. If lead painted components are to be disturbed during the renovation, be sure that only lead trained personal are handling those components. Lead removal will generate lead dust and debris. Unless the house is properly cleaned, it will be more hazardous after the work than it was before! For additional information on how to protect you and your family please contact us.