You’ve heard of mesothelioma before. But you may think that because you never worked a blue-collar job you’re not at risk of mesothelioma. The bad news is you may be at risk even though you’ve never stepped onto a factory floor in your life.
The good news, though, is that although the holidays can be stressful mesothelioma doesn’t have to be a part of it. Here are some simple steps you can take to lower your risk of mesothelioma.
Know Your Asbestos
The first step is knowing the problem. We used to use asbestos widely until about 1980 in our homes. As you probably already know, asbestos accounts for the majority of the nearly 2,500 mesothelioma deaths every year. You can find out more about mesothelioma here.
Asbestos itself isn’t a problem. If you have asbestos in your ceiling then there’s no need to panic. It’s only dangerous when it’s disturbed. Plenty of households do nothing about asbestos because it’s safer to leave it undisturbed than to have it removed.
Detecting Whether Your House has Asbestos
The chances are if your home was built before 1980 there’s asbestos somewhere. So, if you’re thinking about renovations you must call a professional. Asbestos isn’t immediately obvious and you must be trained to spot the signs.
Do this before renovating and have your home fully inspected.
You’ll need to make sure that a sample is sent to a certified lab to confirm that there’s asbestos inside. The Environmental Protection Agency also offers solutions for dealing with asbestos.
What to Do if Your House has Asbestos
Any contractor working for you must be aware that they may be working with or close to asbestos. Either try not to disturb it or put in a contingency plan for removing the asbestos, if necessary.
Remember, the best way to deal with asbestos and to reduce your risk of mesothelioma is to not touch it in the first place.
Beware if You or Your Spouse Works with Asbestos
The worry is not so much accidental asbestos exposure. It’s whether you’re working with asbestos in the first place. Even today a lot of jobs will expose you to this substance.
Some of the common jobs that involve dealing with asbestos include:
- Factory workers.
- Anyone working with insulation.
Some people have been diagnosed with mesothelioma because their spouse returned home without changing out of their work clothes. When the fibers circulate in the air this is when the damage happens.
So, what is the recommendation?
Your employer must warn you if there’s a risk of asbestos exposure. If they don’t you can sue them. But you also have a responsibility to make sure you change out of your work clothes, wear protective equipment, and to ensure you’re not exposing anyone else.
Most employers should offer training so you don’t bring home anything nasty.
Test the Air in Your Home
One of the best ways to keep your family safe is to have the air tested occasionally. An asbestos expert can test the air for asbestos.
They’ll be able to tell you whether you’ve been exposed. Remember that it’s not always clear if there’s asbestos in the air. Only a professional can tell you for sure.
You should always do this if you’ve just carried out some housework or even if you’re just worried.
So, are you ready to make sure that your home isn’t leaving you with a risk of mesothelioma?
It’s simple and it doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money. Find out whether you have asbestos and try to keep it undisturbed. If you do have to move it never attempt to do it yourself.
Do you have asbestos in your home?