Vapors released into the air can be acute to severe with exposure to health common symptoms. Symptoms can range from irritated skin, abdominal pain to more serious symptoms like difficulty breathing, swallowing and even pneumonia.
The chemicals in paint fumes can have both short- and long-term health effects. While painting and while the paint dries, some people may experience symptoms such as headaches, watering eyes, dizziness, and breathing problems. Other immediate symptoms include throat and lung irritation and blurred vision.
Oil-based paints contain toxic solvents that make the paint spread more evenly. These products also emit harmful chemicals known as volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. Once these paints dry, the VOCs evaporate into the atmosphere only to be inhaled by unsuspecting decorators.
Oil-based paints emit a greater number of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This means that oil based primer is not the first choice for interiors as the VOCs can be harmful if routinely inhaled.
Thankfully, you don’t have to wait too long for the paint to dry and the oil fumes to dissipate. It usually takes about two to three days for the fumes to dissipate and for the paint to fully dry and cure. During this time it is best to stay in the area as much as possible.
Simply pour white vinegar into bowls and spread around the room. The acetic acid in vinegar neutralizes the molecules that carry odors. Tip: Use white vinegar (with 10% acetic acid) instead of white vinegar (5% acetic acid) for faster results.
Most interior paints are water-based paints. They are very safe to use. Solvent or oil based paints may be more irritating to eyes and skin. They can also cause more irritation if the vapors are inhaled.
According to the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in paint fumes can cause various problems. Short-term exposure to VOCs can cause irritation, headaches, dizziness, blurred vision and temporary memory loss. Some of these may be more serious than others.
VOCs given off by paint will break down over time after the paint has dried on the wall, but this process can take a while, with most clearing up within the first six months of application< /b> resolve. It is always recommended to minimize the number of VOCs entering the atmosphere of your home.
Oil-based paint fumes contain potentially toxic hydrocarbons and high levels of volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, which perform numerous functions in paint and evaporate during drying. The main health effects of oil-based paints are due to polluted air from VOCs, inhalation and intoxication.
Oil-based paint poisoning occurs when large amounts of oil-based paint enter your stomach or lungs. It can also occur if the venom gets in your eyes or touches your skin.
With the windows open, you can let fresh air and paint fumes or odors circulate several times an hour. Coupled with today’s modern paint, that fresh paint chemical smell will probably be gone in about 36-48 hours. Stronger color formulas may take up to a week to completely dissipate.
Oil-based foundations take at least eight hours to dry. You may need to lightly sand the primer on smooth wood surfaces with 180 grit sandpaper to create an easier bond surface. Be sure to wash away any dust caused by the sanding and allow the area to dry before applying your paint.
Good ventilation. If you can’t avoid using solvents (and even if you can!), it’s always a good idea to paint in a well-ventilated area. Leave a window or two open to allow air and vapors to circulate.
You should wait at least 72 hours after the paint has dried before sleeping in the room. Sleeping in a freshly painted room can damage the nervous system as the released paint chemicals can build up in the brain and impair its function. This can lead to dizziness, memory loss and coordination problems.
The authors noted a return to “normal” VOC levels after 2-3 months. The research was based on “real” studies in Germany, not on chamber tests.
Absorb odors with baking soda
Known for its effectiveness at absorbing refrigerator odors, baking soda also absorbs other odors throughout your home, including the strong smell of oil paint. You can place bowls of baking soda around the room to soak up the smell.
With this in mind, a general “rule of thumb” to avoid unwanted exposure to paint fumes (and to bring the air back to acceptable quality) is to continue ventilation for 2 or 3 days. Follow paint can directions for safe cleaning of brushes and other equipment.