What harm can chemicals do me?

How dangerous a chemical is depends on several things:

  • What the chemical is and what form it takes – chemicals have many different properties and can be solids, liquids or gases. Some chemicals damage your skin, some chemicals can be breathed in and damage your lungs, and some chemicals can get into your body (through your skin or when you breathe them in) and damage your organs (such as your brain, heart, liver, and kidneys). Once in your body, some chemicals can also affect your fertility and your unborn child.
  • The length of time you are exposed to it.
  • The amount of the chemical that you are exposed to.
  • Some chemicals are also dangerous because they are flammable or explosive.
Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.