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Agricultural Safety Topic - Skin Irritants

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Objective: To be able to describe the hazards that can occur when solvents and acids come in contact with the skin, and to know how to prevent this exposure. Background: Solvents affect the skin differently. Because they are usually used to remove grease and oil in industrial processes, it is not surprising that these solvents also remove fats and oils from the skin. When this occurs, water is also lost and the skin becomes cracked and dry. On the other hand, prolonged exposure to oils and waxes can plug the skin's hair follicles and sweat ducts, causing inflammation and acne. Dermatitis is an inflamed and irritated skin condition. There are two types of dermatitis: Primary irritation and Sensitization. Primary irritation: Occurs from contact with a substance in sufficient quantity. Strong acids, caustics and solvents are example of primary irritants. Sensitization: Occurs as a result of an allergic reaction to a substance. The sensitivity is usually established over a long period, and once established, exposure to just a small amount of the substance can produce a severe case of dermatitis. In addition to chemical substances, physical agents, such as heat, cold, water, sunlight and radiation, can also injure skin. AGRICULTURAL SAFETY TOPICS SkIn IRRITAnTS

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