Epoxy resin: What is epoxy sensitization? Advantages and disadvantages of epoxy resin

Epoxy resin coatings are used in various industries to protect floorings, concrete, pipeline, and more. It is a versatile substance that provides surface protection and safeguards materials from corrosion. However, when it is widely used and not handled properly, it affects a person’s immune system and causes serious health issues. Did you know, what is epoxy sensitization

Epoxy resin
Source: epoxy-expert

It causes a person to become allergic when exposed to the substance. The small amount of exposure leads to a strong allergic reaction in the future. Signs and symptoms are irritation in the eyes, throat, nose, skin, and lungs. For example, a person who has epoxy sensitization exposed repetitively exhibits eye irritation, even if they never have contact with their eyes.

Here let us discuss what epoxy are, its advantages and disadvantages, and what type of Personal protective equipment (PPE) to wear when handling this material.

What is epoxy?

Epoxy is a versatile chemical compound that has a unique feature of mechanical and resistance properties. Generally, it is of three types: pure epoxy resin, polyester resins, and epoxy acrylates. Each of these has different properties and is used over specific situations. BADGE or DGEBA is abbreviated as Bisphenol A diglycidyl ether, where this epoxy resin is used for 75 percent industrially. Epoxy resins contain a curing agent from a class of compounds called amines. Other chemicals include solvents, filler, and pigments.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Epoxy Resin

Generally, epoxy resins are used in industries such as construction, electrical system, industrial tooling, and marine, aerospace, and automotive. Even epoxy resins are purchased to use in home DIY projects. Let’s take a look at epoxy’s advantages and disadvantages

Epoxy advantages

  • It offers heat, UV, and abrasion resistance to materials. 
  • It has a corrosion-resistant property, acts as a sealant, and protects surfaces, including floors, pipelines, metal, countertops, and equipment parts. 
  • Epoxy dries quickly and is extremely durable and hard.
  • It acts as a great insulator. Often it is found in electrical circuits and transistors to protect parts from moisture, dust, dirt, and other debris that damage materials over time. 
  • The most desirable advantage is that it is a powerful, high-performance adhesive capability. 
  • It is resistant to heat and chemicals and is considered a safer and long-lasting option. 
  • Generally, it is used to bond heavy materials such as concrete, stone, wood, glass, metal, and plastics. 
  • Epoxy offers a shiny clear coating to surfaces and provides the best aesthetic appeal. It is a cost-effective solution for homeowners and builders so that you can avoid the high price of a stone. 

Epoxy disadvantages

The epoxy contains a chemical that is hazardous to human health. For instance, when you get expose via direct contact or inhalation, it leads to acute issues such as:

  • Skin irritation
  • Allergic skin reactions
  • Eye irritation
  • Asthma and breathing problems due to irritation of the respiratory tract (nose, throat, and lungs)
  • Headaches 
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion

According to research, when pregnant women expose to certain compounds in epoxy, it will increase the risk of fertility issues, birth defects, miscarriage, and stillbirth. In men, certain chemicals in epoxy resins reduce sperm count. Also, certain chemicals cause cancer. 

Personal protective equipment (PPE) when working with epoxy resin coatings

Did you want to mitigate health risks when working with epoxy resins? Then adhere to the safety standards. It is advisable for employers to wear PPE equipment to potentially reduce the hazardous effects of accidental contact. 

Here have listed few PPE items to wear when handling epoxy:

  • Wear eye protection glasses
  • Respirators
  • Gloves
  • Sleeves and coveralls
  • Aprons
  • Boots 

Wrapping it up

Hope you have understood what epoxy sensitization is and its advantages and disadvantages. With a clear view, prevent exposure or contact with epoxy by wearing the required PPE equipment. If you want to give protection to your employees when handling epoxy, contact a reliable company to buy quality PPE equipment. With the right equipment, your workers will work comfortably and safely. 

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