Creosote is a chemical compound that builds up in the fireplace after wood or coal has been burned. If it is left to accumulate in the fireplace, it can put everyone who enters the home at serious health risk. To avoid these problems, it is necessary for homeowners to have their fireplaces and chimneys professionally cleaned on a regular basis.
If someone works with the fireplace and then touches their face, they may get creosote in their eyes. This can cause an uncomfortable sensation but it can also cause chemical burns on the surface of the eyes. These burns are not only extremely painful but they can lead to a permanent loss of vision for the person inflicted with them.
Another problem to consider is that someone may touch the inside of the fireplace and then put their hands to their mouth. If someone ingests creosote, they are putting themselves at risk for severe kidney and liver damage. This can cause a number of internal illnesses, many of which are potentially fatal. This is an especially big problem for children who may play near the fireplace and then put their hands in their mouths.
One of the most common health dangers of creosote is that it is extremely flammable. When creosote builds up in the fireplace, it puts the family at a significantly increased risk for a dangerous house fire. A simple fireplace cleaning can be the thing that stands between a family and a devastating fire.
Creosote is not something that the average homeowner might be aware of and that is why regular fireplace inspections are necessary. If someone consumes or even comes into contact with creosote, they may be exposing themselves to significant health risks. Even those who do not touch the fireplace will be at risk of falling victim to a house fire if creosote is allowed to accumulate.