What is Asbestos?

The asbestos mineral has many uses. It is ideal for insulation of heat ducts and water pipes, roof shingles, floor tiles, car brake pads, and an assortment of gaskets.

Asbestos has been used widely for building construction materials particularly in the United States. The fibers of this mineral are so minuscule. However, asbestos is very tough and resistant to fire as well as other chemical reactions. Unfortunately, it has been stringently regulated because asbestos exposure is said to be one of the major causes of lung and respiratory ailments.

Asbestos Medical Findings

The prevalent use of asbestos was stopped in the late seventies after being discovered to be dangerous to the health of human beings. Medical experts learned that the tiny fibers can easily be inhaled and sticks to the inside layer of your lungs and inner tissues. It cannot be forced out or overcome by the human body due to its firmness. The exposure can lead to asbestos poisoning.

However, not all asbestos products are dangerous. There are stable asbestos compounds like unbroken cement and tiles which are not really considered as an immediate danger. Contact with powdery asbestos threads is common during the process of grinding, breaking off or retrofitting these products. These can possibly release asbestos into the air where it is inhaled by people.

Workers in the construction, manufacturing and shipping industries had more opportunities of asbestos exposure symptoms compared to ordinary persons. These laborers have become more prone to lung-related disorders.  Asbestos abatement or removal became widespread not only in industrial and construction areas. Owners of residential units, office buildings and schools also took the initiative to have this product replaced in observance of government laws on the use of asbestos. At that time, workers were ordered to wear protective masks and clothes as precautionary measure.

Asbestos Related Diseases

Medical studies also disclosed that there are three major forms of asbestos disease. These are Mesothelioma, Asbestosis and lung cancer. The first is described as an unusual form of cancer that affects the threadlike and protective covering of the heart, lungs and internal organs of the body. The frequent cause is asbestos exposure. The sad part is that Mesothelioma can be unaffected by regular cancer remedies. In short, there may be no cure for this disease although there are treatments to reduce pain and extend the life span of victims. Majority of those affected find out only about their sickness after 20 years. Experts are still pursuing more research and clinical tests to find a possible cure for this deadly cancer.

On the other hand, asbestosis is referred to as a recurring pneumoconiosis disease in which the lung tissue experiences slow and recurring fibrosis or scarring. It is a general term which describes a lung malady connected to the breathing in of considerable quantity of dust from asbestos. A definition of lung cancer is the unrestrained growth of uncharacteristic cells that begin in just one or both lungs. The malformed cells fail to grow as healthy tissues but divide quickly and form tumors. Asbestos and cancer have been cited as inter-related.