The Unseen Dangers of Smoke Damage in New Jersey

Smoke Damage

It’s estimated that home fires caused over $15.9 billion in property damage in the U.S. in 2021. But it’s not just the fire that leaves behind a huge amount of loss. Smoke damage from a fire can also affect your health.

Fire soot contains extremely small, yet very toxic, particles made up of carbon, soils, dust, chemicals, and other acids and metals. Because these particles are so small, they can travel very deeply into your lungs. The carbon in these particles is mainly made up of coal, oil, wood, and other fuels, making them highly carcinogenic, or having the potential to cause cancer.

Smoke damage can affect many things, including:

  • clothing
  • furniture
  • carpet/rugs
  • curtains
  • walls

The particles from smoke are suspended in the air. They land and cling to anything they touch. Whenever an object is moved, like clothing on a body, or curtains blowing in a breeze, these particles are then stirred up. So, until these objects are thoroughly cleaned, and the soot removed, you run the risk of inhaling the toxic smoke particles.

Those who already have compromised respiratory systems, due to asthma, emphysema, or bronchitis, are at a higher risk of complications from smoke damage. Even when a fire is extinguished, the lethal chemicals combined in smoke, (carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide , and soot,) can cause permanent damage to the lungs.

Smoke Damage

Those who have health complications from smoke damage can experience:

  • eye irritation
  • skin problems
  • inflamed sinuses and lung tissue
  • slower oxygen circulation in the body
  • labored or difficulty breathing
  • coughing, drowsiness, or nausea

It’s better to wait until an authority with the fire department gives you the okay to return to the residence, but usually, this is for just when the structure is safe to be in. Once you are able to return to the property to begin fire damage restoration, it is important to wear a suitable filtration mask while you are in the home, to avoid inhaling dangerous particles from smoke damage.

Don’t live with a false sense that everything is fine when it comes to health dangers from smoke damage. If you’ve experienced a home fire, call a certified smoke and odor cleanup company, like PDQ Restoration. Using a certified company for your fire restoration needs ensures the best clean-up of the smoke damage and smoke smell removal, as well as providing reassurance to your property damage insurance company that you’re dealing with a reputable company.