If you have heard about carbon monoxide poisoning, you are probably wondering what kind of occurrence this is. Believe it or not, this carbon monoxide exposure is more present in our lives than you can possibly imagine.
In order to learn more about the toxicity of carbon monoxide and the dangers related to this type of exposure, read on.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Basically, carbon monoxide is a deadly gas containing no taste, no color and no smell. These qualities make this gas even more dangerous due to the fact that it cannot be detected easily. Hence, this gas has is informally referred to as the silent killer.
Due to all these factors, carbon monoxide is responsible for many cases of death annually, taking place due to the victims breathing the gas in. Most commonly, carbon monoxide gets emitted through the process of incomplete burning of carbon-based materials. So, coal, wood, kerosene and other such fuels and materials, all can produce carbon monoxide, potentially leading to poisoning and health problems. Moreover, there are many other sources of carbon monoxide around us, getting produced from the vehicles we drive and appliances we use at home through the devices we commonly get in contact with at work.
How Does Carbon Monoxide Kill?
This gas takes thousands of lives annually, with a vast majority of victims not even being aware of the fact that they are poisoned until too late. Thus, the victims may feel sleepy and succumb to this sensations, never waking up again.
Therefore it is crucial to know the ways in which carbon monoxide kills and the sources of this gas, being aware of the situations you can avoid in order to prevent jeopardizing your health. Apart from the above mentioned sources of carbon monoxide, automobile exhausts, tobacco smoke, damaged chimneys or fireplaces, machines running on gasoline or burning fuels, faulty systems for central heating and improper ventilation, all can trigger carbon monoxide exposure.
Once the carbon monoxide poisoning starts taking its toll chest tightness, tiredness, headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, upper body pain, weakness in the muscles and drowsiness, all might strike. Finally, the last stage of the poisoning is usually the loss of consciousness.
According to various statistical researches, about 1,500 American citizens die from carbon monoxide poisoning and more than 10,000 people get injured by this form of exposure.
How Can You Prevent Exposure?
When the exposure is noticed on time, the chances of treatment and avoidance of health danger exist. Basically, the more CO you inhale, the greater the damage to your vital organs is. So, the best way of protecting yourself and preventing the exposure to carbon monoxide is through knowing which the sources are, avoiding them.
Stay at home during high toxicity days and keep the windows closed during high traffic, especially if your home is near the road. Also, taking into consideration that various appliances emit carbon monoxide, use these carefully and make sure that you keep your dwelling ventilated. The same goes for your office, whenever you use devices which produce carbon monoxide.
Moreover, there are numerous sources of information regarding protection from carbon monoxide exposure exist, due to the fact that we have learned almost everything about this gas and the dangers related to it. Thus, doing your own research is a very good step to take.
Alternatively, you can simply install a CO detector inside your home. This device can be purchased in many different kinds of stores and many newly built buildings are pre-equipped with CO detectors. These devices run on batteries or through other power sources. Either way, having these inside your home will keep you safe from carbon monoxide exposure.
If you have this form of alarm installed and the device starts beeping, you are advised to react immediately, opening all windows, ventilating the place. Additionally, if any of the above mentioned symptoms start appearing in you or your family members, call 911 immediately and seek assistance.
Ultimately, keep in mind that the effects of carbon monoxide can easily be mistaken for an onset of the common flu. Thus, stay alerted and react if any of the most serious signs of CO poisoning appear.
Also, even though the CO exposure might not kill you, it has the power to leave catastrophic consequences on your health. Thus, make sure that you are safe and keep yourself and your family protected through adequate prevention measures.
To conclude, the silent killer can easily lead to various health complications and even death. Being present all around us, through the devices we use and the fuels we burn, it is easy to get exposed to CO, especially when you bear in mind that this gas is invisible, bearing no smell or taste.
Educate yourself about carbon monoxide, its presence in the world around us, and means of prevention of its harmful effects. This is the best way of protection.