Chemicals are a major part of our everyday life at both home and work. Examples of common chemicals that we may encounter include paint, bleach and other household cleaners.
Chemical exposure can occur 4 different ways:
- Inhalation: breathing in dusts, mists and vapors
- Ingestion: eating contaminated food (food that has been exposed to airborne contaminants)
- Absorption: skin contact with a chemical
- Injection: forcing an agent into the body through a needle or high-pressure device
How to protect against chemical hazards:
- Reading container labels, safety data sheets (SDSs) and safe-work instructions before handling a chemical.
- Using specified personal protective equipment (PPE) that may include chemical-splash goggles, a respirator, safety gloves, apron, or safety glasses with side shields.
- Inspect all PPE before use. Look for defects in the equipment such as cracks, missing parts, rips, etc.
- Wash hands before eating, especially after handling chemicals.