Turrialba’s volcanic activity is decreasing, but people must be prepared. Breathing ashes is a great risk for your health. Therefore, according to several experts, the best thing people can do is to avoid full exposure to volcanic ash.
Pulmonologist Mario Sibaja from San Juan de Dios Hospital said the ash mainly affects the respiratory tract, skin and eyes. According to the expert, ashes usually have an acidic composition that produces irritation, particularly in the eyes and airways and it causes coughing. However, these effects are temporary.
Daniel Salas, a physician from the Department of Health Surveillance, made some recommendations to parents with children:
-If there is a ash fall, go inside.
-Cover children’s eyes and nose. Use a damp cloth.
-When ash fall has finished, do not go outside inmediately.
-Children shouldn’t eat in public roads.
In addition, authorities from the Costa Rican Department of Social Security recommend patients with asthma, chronic bronchitis, rhinitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), comply with their treatment permanently.
According to doctor Marisela Salas, director of the Eye Clinic, the ash can cause discomfort, dry eye syndrom, burning, photosensitivity, ocular allergies and even conjunctivitis. due to these effects, she suggests people lubricate their eyes every four to six hours with artificial tears, and avoid using contact lenses and scratching the eye, since it could injure the cornea.
Workers should follow these suggestions:
-Cover yout mouth and nose with a damp cloth or masks.
-Use glasses or goggles to protect your eyes.
-Wear long-sleeve shirts.
-Use a hat to protect your head.
-Avoid using contact lenses.
-Be careful when climbing stairs and ceilings.
-Cover or wrap the food that you consume at work.
-Check the evacuation plans in your workplace.
-When there is an ash fall, do not go outside. If you are outside, look for a shelter.
-If exposed to ash, wash with water.