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Total dust / respirable fraction

Person cutting metal and producing inhalable dust

Dusts are very fine solid particles that remain suspended in the air. These are usually particles that separate from materials, tissues, food, skin, animal hair, smoke from combustion ... They can come from our daily activities or from the outside environment. Dust is therefore an accumulation of several components whose composition is unknown. It must be analyzed to know all the particles that compose it. Through the respiratory system, they can penetrate inside the body according to its size.

"Total dust" has sizes ranging from 10 to 100 microns and can be retained in the nasal cavity. Breathable dusts ranging in size from 5 to 10 microns can enter the trachea, lungs and bronchioles. They can also be swallowed or spit by the individual. Dusts that are very fine (0.5 microns) can be deposited in the pulmonary alveoli.

Dust can be found in carpets, fabrics, curtains, sofas, ventilation units and their ducts, fireplaces, kitchen, skirting boards, moldings ... in short, everywhere in the building.

Risk for the health

Dust associated with inadequate moisture promotes mite reproduction. These can cause skin irritation, allergies, respiratory problems ... The risks related to dust also depend on the type in question. Individuals may have different effects such as:

  • Breathing difficulty;
  • Allergies;;
  • Toxic effects on the body;
  • Lesions on the nose
  • Fibrogenic effects (eg connective tissue proliferation in the lungs);
  • Cancer

Boat to represent naval expertise

The dose that the body will absorb varies depending on its concentration and the duration of exposure to the contaminant in question. The risks of toxicity and the intensity of the reaction are proportional to the absorption. The state of health and the proper functioning of the individual's organs can also influence the level of intoxication of a substance. Generally, workers who smoke tobacco see the toxic effects increase. Tobacco smoke can increase the effects of dust on the respiratory tract because it has already decreased the efficiency of the lungs which slows down their cleaning of the respiratory cells. For example, it has been shown that tobacco and asbestos and / or silica when exposure is simultaneous, create a synergistic action that increases the harmful effects of the contaminant.