Health Risks After House Fire
If your home has recently suffered from a horrible fire, don’t hesitate to take action in calling for emergency fire damage restoration services. The smoke and soot byproducts will only spread over time and engulf additional building materials if they aren’t treated right away.
But what is worse about the smoke damage is that it can cause serious health risks. In fact, the smoke can also linger for up to several weeks following the fire. To make matters worse, these thick layers of soot and smoke will be difficult to remove, thus, requiring professional fire cleanup products.
All of the following include the health risks that can occur after a house fire:
- Breathing issues
- Skin issues
- Eye irritation
- Long-term health risks
As you can imagine, breathing in smoke will certainly trigger coughing. But even after the thick black fumes have passed, the odor can linger and cause additional health risks. Porous materials including drywall, furniture, carpet, walls, and wooden surfaces are known to hold the most amount of smoke damage.
If inhaled, smoke and soot byproducts can cause all of the following breathing issues:
- Shortness of breath
- Other respiratory issues
The byproducts from soot and smoke are a severe skin irritant, causing irritation and dryness. To make matters worse, home remedies such as lotion won’t help. If the issue is severe, such as 3rd degree burns, seek medical attention right away.
Also be careful when putting on clothes that were present during the fire. Even after washing them, some smoke and soot remnants may be left behind that can cause additional skin discomfort and irritation.
As you can imagine, smoke and soot will cause the eyes to tear and turn red almost instantly. They can also become itchy if continuously rubbed. But the worst of it all is that smoke damage is not always visible, and can cause significant irritation over time. If you are suffering eye irritation after fire damage to your property, consult with a doctor right away.
Long-term Health Risks
In addition to breathing, skin, and eye issues, soot and smoke damage can also cause long-term health risks. These include:
- Heart Attack
- Lifelong consequences for infants
What Makes Smoke Damage So Dangerous?
When a fire occurs, many combustible items will not burn “cleanly”; for items that contain various amounts of chemicals, they become extremely dangerous when burned. This includes everyday items such as the following:
- Wood products
- All materials containing asbestos
Due to the health risks they cause, fire damage restoration should always be handled by the professionals.
What Kinds of Toxic Substances Cause Health Risks?
All of the following substances released from burning materials can cause health risks after a fire:
- PVC – hydrogen chloride, dioxin chloromethane, halocarbons, phosgene, and bromomethane.
- Carbon materials – ammonia, nitrogen oxides, tar, hydrogen, and carbon monoxide.
- Sulfur – sulfur dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, and thiols.
- Wood smoke – over 100 chemicals found in cigarette smoke.
- Building materials used in 1950’s – 1980’s – Mesothelioma (cancer).
How Can Soot be Removed Safely?
The best way to remove soot and smoke damage is with professional products and equipment. The professionals at ServiceMaster Restoration by Century use personal protective equipment (PPE) that include body suits, gloves, and breathing masks to ensure their safety during the cleaning process.
The products they use have also been perfected over time, along with their training, to fully remove soot and smoke byproducts from the affected surfaces. The technicians at ServiceMaster Restoration by Century can also help you determine which items are more cost-effective to replace than restore, in addition to working with your insurance agency during the claims process.
What is Included in Fire Damage Restoration?
Each fire damage cleanup company will vary in their methods and procedures; however, the professionals at ServiceMaster Restoration by Century guarantee complete peace of mind. They will work with you throughout the entire cleaning process, from assessing the damage to conducting the final inspection.
- 24/7/365 Availability
- Immediate response
- Emergency stabilization and board ups
- Assessment of the damage
- Separation of items to be restored and discarded
- Content cleaning and pack outs
- Controlled demolition
- Removal of all soot and smoke byproducts
- Disinfection and sanitation of all surfaces
- Final inspection
- Providing detailed service report to insurance agent
With the professional help and products used by these technicians, you can look forward to a completely restored property in no time.
For more information regarding professional fire damage restoration services provided by ServiceMaster Restoration by Century, give them a call at (281) 213-5553.