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View Full Version : acrylic dust / paint inhalation and bronchitis?


mek42
05-15-2009, 11:19 PM
Hi there. I'm in week 4 of a pretty nasty bronchitis. The second time I went to the doc I had him put me on advair which has me ok enough to go back to work (lost 60 hours over the course of two weeks and almost lost consciousness while driving due to a coughing fit).

I had a similar event happen about 7 years ago, except that my symptoms got much worse before getting put on advair, which helped earlier.

A week or two prior to the onset of symptoms 7 years ago, I helped a friend sand off a bunch of acrylic paint from an object prior to repainting it. No respiratory protection at all then.

During the weeks leading up to the current symptoms I had been working on some acrylic on wood which involved periodic sanding of the acrylic and also did some airbrushing for the first time in a while. This time I wore a faceshield and stood in the path of clean air from my ambient air cleaner, but wasn't wearing my half-mask respirator - but I wasn't generating a much acrylic dust relative to the amount of wood dust I am able to tolerate either.

I have tried doing a Google search to see if it is reasonable to wonder if I might have a sensitivity to inhaled acrylic dust and/or paint, but my search-fu has failed me yet again.

Does anyone here know of any sites to read about acrylic dust / paint inhalation and respiratory health?

Thanks!

idylbrush
05-15-2009, 11:33 PM
You might consider talking to the tech folks at Golden, they are very good at finding answers to these types of questions.

mjp79
05-16-2009, 02:00 AM
I'm sorry. I don't know of any sites. I have asthma that is set off by the strangest things.

I would imagine inhaling dust of any kind could trigger bad respiratory symptoms especially if your lungs are compromised at all.

Bill_E
05-16-2009, 12:53 PM
As a general rule I would suggest always using at least a dust mask when sanding. A face shield and moving air may do more harm then good as the air flow is unpredictable. It may in fact make it worse. I never have a fan going when sanding gesso and keep a damp paper towel around to wipe down the dust. Fans just stir it all up and keep it airborne.

When air brushing, you should always use a suitable respiratory protection.

From a guy who suffers from similar sensitivities :)

I should add that it may have little to do with being acrylic and simply just be the particulate load in the bronchials...but I'm not a doctor. I just know that I need to be careful with that. I love wood working, but I need to keep a dust mask around. Some woods are particularly bad.

idylbrush
05-17-2009, 11:15 AM
Bill, have you considered wet sanding gesso. It does wonders to keep the dust down and gives a very nice finish overall.

OkeeKat
05-17-2009, 11:24 AM
Hi I have to say that not wearing the dust mask realy might have been the problem and probably would have prevented it.

I have severe bronchial asthma with chronic sinusitis and have had for over 25 yrs. I'm on singulair, allegra,advair inhaler, nasonex inhaler and when needed albuterol inhaler for emerg.

I have been painting in acrylics for over a year now with no problem, I even gesso, lightly sand and repeat for like 3-4 coats on my canvas'. I do not use a dust mask because the sanding is lighly done by hand and does not produce dust in the air but I then with a damp cloth wipe it down after sanding. Only once outside doing the rocking horse for my grandson did I wear the dust mask and use a elec sander to take off the old varnish so I could repaint it.
I haven't had any problems with my breathing... but my sinuses occas get bad when Hubby has colds which is often, but with my folic acid and vitamins I never get the colds, * knocks on wood.
I hope this helps. if you sensitive to dust.. use protection for your own good.

mek42
05-17-2009, 08:13 PM
Thanks for the replies. I'm doing some research and starting to save up for a PAPR unit. At any rate, I'm not making any more dust or airbrushing until I'm all better. For all I know it might just be allergies / reaction to the funky weather there's been recently, but dust isn't going to be helpful in any event.

If I learn anything more I'll let you all know.

Bill_E
05-18-2009, 03:17 PM
Bill, have you considered wet sanding gesso. It does wonders to keep the dust down and gives a very nice finish overall.Interesting idea. I don't sand the gesso much, only enough to get rid of excessive texture but not smooth. I wonder if it polishes the surface too much for my likes. It would keep the dust down, but I find that not getting too brisk and not having fans on does it too--sort of like sanding plaster. A little care and there is a lot less air born dust...cough cough :eek:

Einion
05-18-2009, 04:28 PM
It is quite possible that you may be sensitive to something in the dust of acrylic paint, but even if you were not I'd recommend taking precautions not to inhale sanding dust of any sort as all dusts can be considered potentially hazardous.

When air brushing, you should always use a suitable respiratory protection.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Aug-2003/3842-thumbsup.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Aug-2003/3842-thumbsup.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Aug-2003/3842-thumbsup.gif

Interesting idea. I don't sand the gesso much, only enough to get rid of excessive texture but not smooth. I wonder if it polishes the surface too much for my likes.
It can, yes; there's a certain polishing action with the wet slurry. In general you'd probably want to use slightly coarser paper than if you were sanding dry.

I gave up sanding acrylic 'gesso' dry many years ago; as I've mentioned in a couple of prior threads I've had it clog normal sandpaper literally in seconds!

Einion