When thinking about asbestos and the consequences we now know are related to its exposure, it can be easy to focus more on the medical aspect and costs associated.
In reality, it is the many lasting and deeply painful human experiences tied to this that should be marked as the true costs.
If you’ve never stopped to consider the long-term impacts of asbestos exposure from economic to emotional, social or community, this guide is for you.
The Economic Impacts of Asbestos-Related Diseases
Aside from the crippling medical costs many families will endure, the economic burden of being diagnosed with an asbestos-related illness also includes loss of income.
Creating long-lasting financial instability for entire families, sufferers are usually too unwell to work in any capacity and must rely on minimal government support to get by. This can impact housing stability, educational opportunities and the standard of living for everyone involved.
The Emotional Toll of Asbestos Exposure
For anyone exposed to asbestos, there is a significant emotional toll taken. Whether illness presents or is diagnosed, the fear of the unknown or the pain of dealing with the consequences causes high levels of stress and anxiety.
With most asbestos-related diseases being terminal, loss and grief are unavoidable. The slow progression of these diseases means the individual afflicted and their loved ones face extended periods grieving this loss.
The Social Cost of Asbestos
When someone is terminally ill, they are often unable to participate in social activities and may find their world becomes much smaller as a result.
This isolates both the individuals affected as well as their families who may feel guilt about attending these events alone or who are responsible for the care of their loved ones.
Contributing to the emotional toll of asbestos, this social isolation can have far-reaching consequences on the mental health of everyone involved
The Impact of Asbestos on Families and Communities
Family members of those diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases and the wider communities in which they live are also adversely affected.
Beyond the emotional aspect mentioned above, families are at risk due to second-hand exposure. Fibres brought home on clothing have been linked with the furtherance of this issue and the development of illness in those closest to asbestos workers.
From a community perspective, legal battles associated with asbestos and the costs of caring for those affected can put a huge strain on resources.
Additionally, it frequently leads to division amongst communities who often fear their livelihoods will be affected by the outcome of any legal action.
The Legacy of Asbestos Exposure
While asbestos mining and the manufacturing of asbestos-related building materials ceased in Australia many years ago, its legacy and continued risk of exposure remain.
Many families and communities continue to deal with the fallout of asbestos. Perhaps most worryingly, due to improper removal and disposal of asbestos, new diagnoses of asbestos-related illnesses continue to emerge.
To avoid the risk of exposure and the many terrible consequences that can occur as a result, it is vital that you always check for asbestos before demolition or renovations.
This should only ever be handled by a licensed professional, such as Icon Asbestos Removals.
Able to perform proper checks, we are also licensed to remove and dispose of asbestos appropriately.
Protect your family, community and livelihood, call our team today at 07 3053 3453.