Carbon monoxide, the gas that we exhale after breathing, is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that kills more Americans each year than any other toxin, including asbestos and benzene. In addition to coming from human exhalations, carbon monoxide arises when:
Certain appliances or pieces of machinery (such as a heater, cooking equipment and a car) are on or being used
Gas, petroleum products, wood or other oils are burned
Enclosed areas, such as a home or a car, are poorly ventilated
Given that carbon monoxide is undetectable and extremely deadly, it’s essential that you are aware of the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning so you when to seek emergency medical care that can save your live.
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Indications that carbon monoxide poisoning has occurred include:
Dull headache (This is the most common initial symptom.)
Impaired ability to walk
Impaired judgment and/or cognition
Lack of coordination
Nausea and/or vomiting
Typically, exposure of 100 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide is harmful to human’s health. Without treatment, carbon dioxide exposure can be fatal. Keep in mind, as well, that carbon monoxide exposure can cause irreversible, devastating damage to an unborn fetus. In most cases, carbon dioxide poisoning—if caught before it becomes fatal—will be treated by intensive hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
The following are some tips on how to reduce your risk of suffering carbon dioxide poisoning:
Install carbon monoxide detectors in your home
Open the garage door before starting a car
Only use gas appliances as directed
Maintain all gas appliances
If your carbon monoxide detector goes off, leave the premises and seek medical attention. Your local utility company or fire department can help you pinpoint the source of any possible carbon monoxide leak, should one occur.
Compensation for Carbon Dioxide Poisoning
If you have survived carbon dioxide poisoning or your loved one has died as a result of carbon dioxide poisoning, chances are you will be entitled to compensation for damages you’ve incurred. For more information about your legal rights and options, contact Gacovino, Lake and Associates.