No matter if you are planning to buy a house or you already have one, it is crucial to have it inspected. There could be mold problems, pests and other issues that can put a financial stress on your shoulders and even damage your health. One of the most severe problems can be asbestos. A Kelowna residential inspection for asbestos will deliver you from significant health problems that can cause serious damage.
Asbestos used to be a building material mostly used to enhance the strength and the durability of the building products. Before 1990, asbestos was used in the construction of many houses and buildings, but, in our days, the use of this material is strictly forbidden. Asbestos contains microscopic fibres that can be inhaled by the inhabitants of a building, resulting in lung diseases and even cancer.
What can happen if you are exposed to asbestos?
This material is highly dangerous for your health and can result in a number of severe conditions.
- Pleural plaques – these are areas of scar tissue on the pleura (lining of the lungs). Since asbestos fibres resemble microscopic needles, you can imagine what can happen if you breathe in those fibres on a daily basis. They will get to your lungs and hurt them, causing the apparition of scar tissue. This condition does not present symptoms initially, but, if you continue to expose your lungs to asbestos, pleural plaques will thicken, causing further problems.
- Pleural thickening – When the scar tissue on the pleura becomes wider, covering a large area, the lining of the lungs will thicken and swell. This will cause the lung to be squeezed and result in breathing issues and discomfort. It will put a significant stress on your lungs, damaging your respiratory functions.
- Asbestosis – As a result of the thickened pleura, the lungs will, eventually, shrink if you keep on being exposed to asbestos fibres. The shrinking of the lungs is a serious condition that can leave you scarred for life. Shrunken lungs will cause breathlessness and will diminish your lung capacity, resulting in severe problems with the respiratory functions.
- Asbestos – related cancer – This type of cancer is caused by injury to the tubes that carry the air in and out of your lungs. If you inhale asbestos fibres long enough and have a sensibility, you can develop this type of cancer. It initially grows within the lung, but it will, eventually, spread to the rest of the body.
- Mesothelioma – This is another type of cancer that can be caused by asbestos and is one of the most severe types. The bad news is that even low levels of exposure can cause this disease if the exposure is constant.
The Government of Canada has regulated asbestos use through the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act and the Canadian Environmental Protection Act in 1999. However, asbestos in your home can still be found, especially if your house was built before 1990. There are specific asbestos removal procedures but, firstly, you have to determine whether you are exposed to this health hazard. The best way to do so is to hire one of our highly skilled asbestos inspectors and have your house tested. The comprehensive analysis will include air and material sampling that will be sent to a lab to determine the level of exposure or if there are asbestos fibres present in your home.
Remember that the initial scarring of the pleura caused by asbestos fibres does not have any symptoms. Don’t wait for symptoms to appear or it may be too late. Get in touch with C4U home inspection services and schedule your Kelowna asbestos inspection as soon as possible.