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Metal Corrosion and Human Health: Risks and Prevention Strategies

February 19, 2023

Metal corrosion is a natural process that occurs when metals react with their surroundings, causing them to degrade and eventually fail. After exposure to prolonged water, steam, humidity or other long standing damage, oxidative processes begin to occur.  Corrosion is a serious problem for infrastructure and machinery, and it can also be harmful to human health. In this article, we’ll look at the dangers of metal corrosion to human health and offer some prevention tips.

Risks of Metal Corrosion to Human Health:

Heavy metal poisoning: Corrosion can cause heavy metals like lead, mercury, and cadmium to be released into the environment. Exposure to these metals can result in a variety of health issues, including developmental problems in children, neurological issues, and organ damage.

Skin and eye irritation: When metals corrode, corrosive substances are released, which can cause skin and eye irritation. This can range from minor irritation to severe burns and permanent damage.

Corrosion can also release metal particles into the air, which can be inhaled and cause respiratory problems such as asthma and lung cancer.

Corroded metals can also contaminate food and water supplies, resulting in the ingestion of harmful metals that can cause a variety of health problems.

Prevention Methods:

Corrosion-resistant materials: Choosing corrosion-resistant materials for products that come into contact with food or water, such as stainless steel or aluminum, can help prevent metal corrosion and contamination.

Coatings and sealants: Coatings and sealants can be applied to metal surfaces to protect them from moisture and other corrosive substances. Some of the best spray sealants include Ducky Products 

Regular maintenance and inspection of metal surfaces can assist in identifying and addressing corrosion issues before they become a health hazard. Using some of the best rust prevention practices with WD 40 rust inhibitor

Proper disposal: Proper disposal of corroded metal products is critical to preventing environmental contamination and potential exposure to harmful metals.

Wearing personal protective equipment such as gloves, goggles, and respirators can help prevent exposure to corrosive substances while working with metal.

In conclusion, metal corrosion can have serious health consequences for humans, including heavy metal poisoning, skin and eye irritation, respiratory problems, and metal ingestion. Metal corrosion risks to human health can be reduced by using corrosion-resistant materials, coatings and sealants, regular maintenance, proper disposal, and personal protective equipment. We can help protect ourselves and our environment from the harmful effects of metal corrosion by taking these steps.


“Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment of Heavy Metal Poisoning.” Heavy metal poisoning, Healthline,

“A Mini Review of Metallic Corrosion and Human Health.” Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health International Journal.

“Metal Corrosion Prevention in Food Processing Facilities.” The Food Safety Magazine.

“Human Health and Metal Corrosion.” Occupational and Environmental Medicine in India.

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