It would be very hard to survive the hot summers without a properly working air conditioner. For an air conditioner to cool the air in your home, it must have a refrigerant known as Freon. While it is necessary for this, there is also the potential risk of it causing some health issues to anyone in the home under certain conditions.
Primary Side Effects of Freon Exposure
There are numerous side effects and symptoms of exposure to Freon at home or in the workplace. With mild to moderate poisoning, individuals may experience dizziness, severe headaches, cough, nausea, and vomiting. Severe poisoning symptoms may include labored breathing, decreased mental capabilities, fluid buildup, and possibly even bleeding inside the lungs, loss of consciousness, irregular heartbeat, and possibly seizures.
Freon and Your Kids
Freon is roughly four times heavier than air itself, which means that the Freon will be most prevalent near the floor. Therefore, your children and pets are the most at risk of serious exposure. Since children are smaller in size and their immune system may not be as strong as an adult, it doesn't take as much Freon to cause side effects to begin.
Freon and Heart Health
The individuals who should be most concerned regarding Freon exposure and potential poisoning are those with heart conditions. Small amounts of Freon exposure shouldn't pose a significant risk to one's health, even if they have cardiovascular issues. However, when one is exposed to excessive, frequent amounts of Freon over an extended period of time, it could cause cardiovascular problems, resulting in cardiac arrhythmias, a heart attack, or even death.
How Long Does It Take to Recover from Freon Exposure Poisoning?
One's recovery depends strictly on how soon they get medical help and how much Freon they were exposed to. Because there can be significant damage to the lungs and the brain, individuals who are able to survive 72 hours or longer ultimately are the most likely to make a full recovery. This is particularly true to those who abuse Freon by sniffing it on purpose, which can result in sudden death.
If you notice that your HVAC unit is leaking Freon, or you suspect that there is a Freon leak due to a crack or hole in the HVAC lines, it is crucial that you get in contact with an experienced HVAC technician immediately for repairs. You should also open up any windows and doors and make use of ceiling fans and portable fans to circulate the air. Everyone should get out of the house and get some fresh air as well. If you begin to feel ill, seek medical attention immediately. The best thing you can do for yourself, your family and your pets is to make sure that you schedule routine check-ups of your air conditioning unit so that leaks can be checked for regularly. For more information, talk to a professional like Long Beach Heating & Air Conditioning Inc.