Is Asbestos Dangerous?

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  • Written By: D Frank
  • Edited By: L. S. Wynn
  • Last Modified Date: 07 October 2016
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Asbestos is a very useful material, but it's also extremely hazardous. It's made from six separate fibrous minerals — chrysotile, crocidolite, amosite, tremolite, anthophyllite, and actinolite. Though it's been used in a variety of products since the early 1900s, it wasn't until the 1960s and 70s that its effects became clear. People who are exposed to this material can experience a range of health problems.

Almost everyone has been exposed to some form of asbestos during their everyday lives. It is extremely heat retardant, and so is used in products like vehicle brake pads, roofing shingles, and floor tiles. It's also commonly found in old insulation for heating ducts and water pipes. The use of such products has declined rapidly in the United States in the late 20th century, but it is still commonly used in some developing countries.

When left in an undisturbed state, asbestos is not harmful. However, cutting or tearing it releases small fibrous particles into the air. These don't dissolve and can linger indefinitely. Inhaling these fibers over a long period of time can cause a variety of variety of breathing and lung disorders, heart problems, and certain cancers, including mesothelioma.


While minimal exposure may not cause problems, many people still choose to hire abatement companies to remove asbestos products from their homes, schools, office buildings. Abatement workers wear insulated clothing and helmeted masks designed to prohibit the substance from entering their bodies. They also secure and isolate the area so ensure all dust and byproducts are contained.

One of the most common conditions caused by exposure to asbestos is asbestosis, a condition in which the lung tissue becomes scarred. People with this condition experience shortness of breath, chronic coughing, and, in advanced stages, spasms. There is no known cure for asbestosis. Workers who mine for the materials used to create asbestos are at a greater risk for exposure, as are employees of manufacturing plants where asbestos products are made.


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Post 3

First of all, asbestos is not a single material at all. It is simply a form of mineral that is extremely long and fibrous.

The mentioned minerals in this article all can have an asbestos form but do not combine to make a material simply know as "asbestos". Unless you are eating large amounts of chrysotile daily it is perfectly safe. Any abatement company is a complete waste of your money.

Post 2

I am currently looking at building D-3 at the naval weapons station at Earle NJ, and the roof is a transite panel roof COVERED with MOSS. So the answer to your question is certainly Y E S !!!!

Post 1

can asbestos have moss on it?

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