Everything to Know About the Hazards of Dichloromethane
When working around dangerous chemicals, it’s essential that you understand the necessary precautions you need to take. Otherwise, you can easily put your long-term health at risk.
Those who work with dichloromethane, in particular, should understand a handful of risks that are associated with it.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about dichloromethane hazards.
What Is Dichloromethane and What Is It Used For?
Dichloromethane (also known as methylene chloride) is a liquid solvent that many different businesses make use of. While the exact use will vary depending on the industry you’re in, this chemical is present within pain strippers, used during the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, and is also present within insecticides.
As you may expect, this means that a large variety of different types of employees need to understand the dangers that it’s able to pose.
What Hazards Are There?
Unfortunately, there are many different hazards associated with this chemical despite its utility. If an individual is exposed to dichloromethane, there’s a risk that they’ll suffer from damage to their brain or central nervous system.
Additionally, high levels of exposure (or exposure over a long period of time) could result in the development of various types of cancers.
Exposure occurs in three primary ways:
- Skin contact
- Eye exposure
Higher levels of exposure will result in more prominent symptoms. For example, long-term skin contact could cause the victim to experience severe burns in that area.
What Precautions Should I Take?
Fortunately, protecting yourself from this chemical is relatively straightforward.
Skin contact can easily be prevented by wearing protective clothing that doesn’t leave your bare skin exposed. The same can be said about wearing protective eyewear.
To reduce the chance you’ll experience complications related to inhalation, it’s imperative to ensure that your work environment is properly ventilated.
What if I’ve Been Exposed?
If you’ve been exposed to Dichloromethane, you need to take the appropriate steps as soon as possible to prevent/minimize injury. Your course of action will depend on what type of exposure you’re suffering from.
For those who’ve had their skin come into contact, immediately remove your contaminated articles of clothing and use a copious amount of soap/water to wash the affected area.
If the chemical comes into contact with your eyes, flush them for at least 30 minutes straight while using large amounts of water.
To deal with inhalation, you’ll need to immediately relocate to an area with better ventilation. If you experience vision difficulties, skin irritation, or trouble breathing, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Managing Dichloromethane Hazards Can Seem Difficult
But it doesn’t have to be.
With the above information about how to handle dichloromethane hazards in mind, you’ll be well on your way toward ensuring that you stay as safe as possible.
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