Asbestos is term that evokes concern among many of us.
But what really is asbestos and how does it impact on our health?
Asbestos is a silica (sand type) type of dust produced in industries, construction, mining and other processes.
This may sound like a normal dust but the truth is it isn’t.
Its fiber like nature makes it highly penetrating in our respiratory systems.
Most of us are pretty much at very low risk of asbestos exposure (except for those living in buildings constructed with asbestos tiles).
However, some groups of workers in fields such as construction, automotive and related industries are more exposed purely because of the nature of their vocation.
But why should we be worried about asbestos?
Asbestos is considered risky when in the air because it’s fibrous particulates easily compromise our respiratory system.
Though this might seem like a case of ordinary dust pollution, workers in several industries are exposed over longer periods of time than the rest of us.
That being said, what are some of the measures that are necessary to reduce asbestos exposure to vulnerable working groups?
Though several jurisdictions have instituted a complete ban on the use of asbestos, several asbestos based products seemed to have outlived the test of time.
Take for instance asbestos roof tiles some of which stand strong on old buildings such as school dormitories and buildings exposing vulnerable teenagers in the process.
Or asbestos laced garage consumables which expose garage workers.
These vulnerable groups and others such as mine and construction workers must be protected by finding a suitable substitute to asbestos.
But what if asbestos usage is unavoidable altogether?
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPEs)
The use of special masks capable of blocking minute asbestos fibers is very key especially for exposed workers.
Construction companies must be made to comply in this regard especially in developing nations where control lapses might lead to a greater disease burden among construction workers.
The asbestos is not only an occupational problem but one all of us must be ready to face on because it is bound to reduce people’s productivity due to lung disease burden.