Mercury is a natural occurring element. This element can be found in rocks, soil, water, but also in air and in living things. Mercury is a unique metal in the world, as it is liquid at room temperature. Mercury is odorless, but also colorless, at least in its pure form.
Despite what you may imagine, mercury is an extremely dangerous metal for your health. This means that this is a hazardous chemical. Mercury exposure can actually lead to serious damage of the central nervous system, as well as the kidneys and liver. Exposure to mercury can lead to both long term and short term health complications. Some serious health problems can be experienced by individuals who are exposed to mercury.
Exposure to mercury can cause:
- Respiratory diseases;
- Skin rashes;
- Muscle tremors;
- Personality changes.
The nerve damage caused by mercury exposure can actually cause paralysis, difficulty in walking, slurred speech and in the most serious cases it can even lead to the death of the patient. Naturally, symptoms, as well as the health complication developed, are going to vary depending on the level of exposure. To how much mercury and how long is a person exposed are crucial factors in determining the level of poisoning.
The most sensitive category of individuals, when it comes to exposure to this metal, are children and pregnant women. They should avoid all type of exposure to mercury. This means that they should eliminate all mercury sources from their houses, including mercury thermometers and barometers. In case mercury is spilled, it should be cleaned immediately, with increased care of not entering into contact with the metal or breathing its vapors.
The highest risk of developing mercury poisoning is through inhalation. Breathing mercury vapors is simple when a split occurs. Breathing the metal is something that will occur extremely quick and which is highly toxic. In fact, even a small amount of mercury in air can cause serious health problems. This is why, you need to be as careful as possible when handing objects that contain the metal.