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Home Renovation And The Dangers It Can Pose for DIY 

Guest Post By Brian Turner (Bio Below)

There are some really great aspects to home renovation and the DIY approach. There’s the satisfaction of knowing that you did everything on your own. It can also (potentially) save you money when you take control of a home renovation project. Saving money is great, but it’s important that it doesn’t affect your health at the same time.

Dealing with home renovation means exposing various layers of drywall, insulation and thus exposure to various hazardous materials. It’s important to wear all of the right safety gear based upon what will be done. It’s better to err on the side of caution and wear too much safety gear than not wearing enough.

One of the biggest dangers is the exposure to asbestos. The Cancer Association provides a fact sheet that talks about where it can reside. Drywall, insulation and even floorboards can contain asbestos. This means that cutting away a wall, redoing floors or doing almost anything else in the home can stir up the particles that contain asbestos.

A primary danger with asbestos is the possibility of developing a rare form of cancer called mesothelioma. It can occur in the lungs from breathing in the particles or in the stomach by way of ingesting the particles. As a precaution, it’s necessary to wear a respirator that will cover nose and mouth when doing home renovation projects.

A dual-cartridge respirator can be purchased at any home improvement store. Reportedly, this will provide adequate protection against breathing in asbestos or any other airborne particle that can cause breathing problems. It’s important to remember that the cartridge has to be replaced periodically. Every model is different so it’s necessary to track the date of replacement to ensure it is properly keeping particles out of the breathing passageway.

(Ensure that you have adequately researched the equipment you are using and ask the advice of the experts. Don’t skimp on safety! We can only provide you with the ideas in this blog. You are responsible for all decisions regarding your safety.)

There are also many solvents that can lead to breathing problems as well as burning of the skin and an irritant to the eyes. When these are used, it’s best to wear a significant amount of safety gear. This includes eye goggles as well as special gloves. Ordinary latex gloves may not be sufficient. Read the MSDS sheet that comes with any chemicals purchased to find out what is required in terms of gloves.
Any kind of sanding or sawing can result in a significant amount of dust and particles flying around as well. At the very least, goggles need to be worn. There are plenty of different models available on the market. It can be advantageous to get the ones that strap onto the back of the head and provide suction to the face. This will ensure dust isn’t getting in, which could scratch the cornea of the eye.

While one of the main dangers is asbestos, there are plenty of dangers that go along with home renovation. It’s important to know about the dangers in advance and plan ahead. Once the home renovation is underway, it’s a good idea to keep on the lookout for potential dangers to keep the entire family safe.

This article was a guest post from Mr Brian Turner of the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.  Brian works as an advocate for environmental health and toxic substance safety.  Our thanks to Brian for his informative and the important information provided.  Learn more about Brian and the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance here.

For more ideas on home renos, check out our blogs: Kitchen Design Ideas and Common Bathroom Remodeling Trends.

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