- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
How Can I Avoid Getting Mesothelioma?
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that affects the mesothelium, or internal linings, of your body's organs. The most common form of mesothelioma is pleural mesothelioma which affects the lining of your lungs. There is currently no known cure for mesothelioma, however the good news is that mesothelioma is the only form of cancer that is completely preventable!
What Causes Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is caused from being exposed to a toxic mineral called asbestos. When someone inhales asbestos particles they penetrate through the inside of the lungs and become trapped inside the internal lining of the organs. Because your body cannot break down asbestos, it attempts to form scar tissue around it. Since exposure to asbestos is the only known cause of mesothelioma, by avoiding being exposed to it you can avoid getting mesothelioma.
Where Asbestos Can Be Found
- Home insulation materials
- Automotive parts
- Areas where active vermiculite mining occurs
Avoid Asbestos = Avoid Mesothelioma
As previously stated, the only known cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos, so avoiding asbestos at all costs is a sure way to lower if not eliminate your risk for developing mesothelioma. The most common place for coming in contact with asbestos is from a workplace which environment contains large levels of asbestos. Avoid and/or stop work at these jobs if you are concerned about high levels of asbestos.
Jobs To Avoid
Since most cases of mesothelioma can be traced back to workplace exposure to asbestos, here are the top most common jobs to avoid:
- Mechanic - Since asbestos is desired for its quality of being able to withstand high levels of heat, it has been used in automotive brake parts for years. Any mechanic job, but especially ones dealing with lots of brake work should be avoided.
- Construction/Demolition - Asbestos has been used in building materials, therefore any jobs dealing with construction may be at risk for asbestos exposure. This is especially true in older homes or buildings built before the negative affects of asbestos were discovered.
- Shipyard Worker - One of the jobs with the highest levels of asbestos exposure is shipbuilders. Asbestos was used for years for insulation of pipes and boilers in older ships. Those who worked in this field resulted in close to 80% of them contracting an asbestos related disease.
Living Near Asbestos Mines
Absolutely avoid living near asbestos mines. Asbestos is mined using explosives which sends huge mesothelioma causing clouds into the air. Residents living near these mines are constantly exposed to airborne asbestos. While most mines have been shut down, there are still a few currently in use.
Do-It-Yourself Home Improvement/Remodeling
Since asbestos has been heavily used in building materials, any home improvement or remodeling projects should be done carefully, especially in older homes. Asbestos can be found in ceilings, walls and insulation in attics, around ducts and pipes. Before beginning any home projects, protect yourself by wearing long pants and shirts, closed toe shoes, gloves, hat and most importantly a dust mask or respirator.
If you or a family member has become a victim of mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos, contact an asbestos attorney for help concerning receiving money damages. Millions of dollars has been set aside in trust funds for victims by asbestos manufacturers and installers or their insurance companies.