If a fire has impacted your home or business, you may be grateful once the flames are put out, thinking that all threats to your health and safety have been averted. However, fires can leave behind toxic smoke and soot byproducts. Mold can even grow if any water is left behind once the fire is extinguished. Learn more about the health risks after a house fire so you can keep yourself and your family safe.
Remnants of the chemicals given off by a house fire can linger for several weeks after the clouds of billowing smoke are gone. You can often smell the smoke damage, which permeates the walls and travels through ductwork, affecting rooms that weren’t directly impacted by the blaze. Musty odors from mold growth may also be apparent if water was used to put out the fire. Breathing in mold, smoke, and soot byproducts can cause the following respiratory problems:
- Shortness of breath
- Asthma attacks
- Worsened respiratory illnesses
Mold, smoke, and soot residue are difficult to remove, especially from porous products such as drywall, carpet, wood, and textiles. As a result, professional fire restoration is often required.
Skin & Eye Irritation
Touching some types of mold can cause rashes and other adverse skin reactions. Even sitting on furniture or wearing clothing that was in the house during the fire can cause skin irritation and dryness. Rubbing your eyes with contaminated hands could cause irritation, inflammation, redness, and watering. If you are suffering from skin or eye irritation after a fire, consult with your doctor right away.
Food Safety Hazards
The kitchen is the most common place for fires to break out. Once the blaze is extinguished, you may think any unburned food is suitable for eating. However, most food is unsafe to eat after a fire.
For instance, smoke and fumes can contaminate boxed and bagged food. High temperatures can spoil food in sealed jars and cans. And toxic firefighting chemicals may linger on any surface they touch. If you’re not sure whether a food product is safe to eat, play it safe and throw it out.
Other Long-Term Health Risks
Exposure to lingering soot and smoke isn’t just dangerous in the short-term. Chemicals from burning plastic, foam, wood, fabric, and other household objects mingle with the smoke. This may potentially cause long-term consequences such as increased cancer risk and a higher chance of heart attack and stroke. Infants exposed to harmful chemicals could suffer lifelong consequences as well.
Avoid These Health Risks—Contact DKI
Before you move back into your fire-damaged home, turn to DKI for help. Our fire damage restoration services consist of smoke and soot removal, deodorization, structural cleaning, and water damage repair, including mold remediation. Our cutting-edge techniques provide a complete, systematic approach to fire cleanup, ensuring a safe environment for your family.
To learn more about our fire restoration services, or to request assistance, please contact us at (844) 354-2255 today.