We love the internet. Cat videos, quick answers using Google, keeping connected with our friends and family. But one thing the internet isn’t so good for is trying to figure out what’s fact and what’s fiction. In many ways, the internet is like a giant megaphone, and it gives everyone a voice — even if they don’t have the best intentions or understanding of what they’re discussing. Due to that, we want to expose some myths, and give the facts.
All Asbestos is Dangerous Always.
This actually isn’t true. Asbestos that is completely sealed within undamaged material like side or ceiling tiles isn’t dangerous. Problems occur when the material is damaged and particles of asbestos can escape. Even something like water damage or a little cracking can be enough for asbestos to escape into the air, so it’s important to make sure any asbestos-containing materials are in perfect condition.
You Don’t Need to Check for Asbestos if You’re Doing the Renovation Yourself.
This may be legally true depending on where you live, but it’s definitely not a responsible decision. Asbestos is dangerous to yourself and everyone in the area. If you remove the asbestos without the proper training, you will likely contaminate the entire worksite and put everyone in the vicinity (yourself included) in danger.
Mesothelioma Can be Caused by Smoking.
Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that affects the lining of the lungs. It differs from ordinary lung cancer, and it is one of the few cancers not caused by smoking. However, asbestos exposure exponentially increases the chance that smokers will develop lung cancer. And unfortunately, even small amounts of exposure to asbestos can lead to the development of mesothelioma.
We don’t need to tell most of you how scary mesothelioma is. Just think back to how scary any cancer diagnosis was just 20-30 years ago. In that time, the treatments for many types of cancer have gotten significantly better, but the outcomes for mesothelioma haven’t improved much. Asbestos can be very dangerous when handled incorrectly, so make sure you always contact and work with trained professionals who can keep you and your family safe.