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Is Freon gas dangerous?

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Quick Answer

Freon gas is somewhat dangerous to handle and should only be handled by a professional. It often cuts off the path for oxygen into the lungs and cells of those who inhale it deeply. If a person is overexposed to it, he might suffer confusion, dizziness and disorders of the cardiovascular or central nervous system.

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Full Answer

Freon is a colorless but volatile gas with a somewhat sweet smell. It is a halocarbon, which means that it's made up of carbon atoms bonded to a halogen such as fluorine or chlorine.

The gas is commonly used as a refrigerant in refrigerators and air conditioning systems. The manufacturing of Freon 113 is restricted, as it is considered a greenhouse gas. The name Freon is a trademark of DuPont.

The symptoms of freon gas poisoning generally include headache, vomiting and eye, ear and throat irritation. Additional repercussions are coughing, frostbite and chemical burns. Signs that the poisoning has reached an advanced state include seizures, fainting, heartbeat irregularities, breathing difficulty, mental impairment, and fluid or blood in the lungs.

Quick treatment is crucial for people who are victims of freon poisoning. The first step to take for those who find freon poisoning victims is to move the person to an area that has fresh air. After that, the next step is to call 911. Emergency-room treatment for freon poisoning includes surgical removal of skin that has burns or other damage, providing a breathing tube to guarantee oxygen and using a gastric lavage, which refers to flushing the stomach with a tube.

The most common cause for freon poisoning is the recreational abuse of refrigerant gas. As of 2014, one in five adolescents has used inhalants at least one time before they enter the eighth grade, according to Healthline.

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