Breathing in dust is quite bad for you so your body rejects it
by sneezing, coughing, spitting up and out. Imagine breathing in
broken glass particles. They cut into the lungs in a thousand
places and couldn't be coughed up. They would travel. Imagine
swallowing a needle or open pin. If the tip was blunt it could
move through the intestine. But because it is sharp it gets caught
in your tissue, then works its way deeper and deeper.
Would we ever knowingly breathe in broken glass? We are
justifiably afraid of it in our food or under our bare feet. We are
unaware that it fills our homes when fiberglass insulation is left
imperfectly sealed off. Any hole made through the ceiling or
wall, even if covered with cloth, lets swarms of broken glass bits
into the house air. Air currents flow inward, into your living
space. So all holes leading to the attic or insulated spaces must
be sealed airtight. Of course, fiberglass should never be used in
home construction, draperies, or around water heaters. The best
advice is to have it all removed while you are away and then
vacuum and dust.
Occasional exposures by house builders working outdoors
does much less harm. Chronic exposure from a single small hole
in the ceiling does a lot of harm, leading to cyst formation. And
that cyst is a perfect place for parasites and bacteria to settle and
multiply. When the intestinal fluke settles there it becomes
Cancer patients with solid tumors have either fiberglass or
asbestos in them.
Asbestos is another tiny bit, sharp as glass, that moves
through your body like a swordfish, impaling your cells until it,
too, gets routed into a cyst.
We have been led to believe that we no longer have asbestos
in our homes because we have outlawed the fireproofing materials
it was used in. While that may be true, the source I find most
often is all too prevalent: the clothes dryer belt. As it gets hot the
belt releases a blast of asbestos particles that are forced through
the seams of your dryer, and also openings in your exhaust hose,
by the high pressure formed inside. It is now in your air.