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Is chalk bad for the lungs?
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diegow


Aug 16, 2006, 7:21 PM
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Is chalk bad for the lungs?
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Hi, I would like to know if breathing chalk often (as anyone who climbs using chalk) could cause any problems to the lungs.

Thanks


deltav


Aug 16, 2006, 7:28 PM
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Who the fuck cares, I eat the stuff too


jgill


Aug 16, 2006, 7:32 PM
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I've used the stuff longer than any climber, ever - over 50 years - and my lungs are in great shape. Of course, I never inhaled . . . 8^)


valeberga


Aug 16, 2006, 7:37 PM
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yes
don't use it (keep the damn chalk off the walls)
don't breathe it (stop going to the gym)
don't let it around you (ditch all of the chalk fairies you know)


jt512


Aug 16, 2006, 7:46 PM
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Take a look at the material safety data sheet here. It sounds pretty serious.
    [*:6d39cdcb51]Avoid breathing vapors, or dusts. Use with adequate ventilation.
    [*:6d39cdcb51]First Aid measures: INHALATION: Remove to fresh air. If not breathing, give artificial respiration. If breathing is difficult, give oxygen.

-Jay


mturner


Aug 16, 2006, 7:59 PM
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We often refer to this as the "white lung"

But in all seriousness I don't think it will have much long term effects (crossing my fingers) but I have bad allergies and have had to take allergy medicine before I go to the gym or I will be hacking the stuff up all night.


shanz


Aug 16, 2006, 8:10 PM
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My name is Tim and im chalkaholic,
It started out innocently a friend said hey this will help you climb harder. Well i was a casual user i didnt want the crags a mess of chalk on every hold. Then one hot summer day i went to sit down with my chalk bag open and poof this large cloud of chalk surrounded my head. I loved the smell taste and feeling of chalk in my lungs it was such a sweet feeling. 6 months later i found i was using chalk everyday whether i was climbing or not i would bury my head in my chalk bag and just inhale. Then it just would do the trick i had to buy a chalk pot that way i could inhale as much chalk as i could. I would spend endless nights inhaling chalk and even brought a small bag with me so when i was on break i could sneak into the back stall and inhale the sweet nectar know as chalk. I got fired needless to say because even though its not illegal it was interfering with with my job i sold my house my car even tried to sell my wife for the feeling of chalk in my lungs. I realized i need help now im here in this thread to admit that i do have a chalk problem. Now i just smoke ciggarettes and pounds of coffee but every once in a while i do get the urge for that feeling.


seek7


Aug 16, 2006, 8:30 PM
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"Section 7 - Handling and Storage
Store in a cool dry place. Do not get in eyes, on skin, on clothing."
Heh


majid_sabet


Aug 16, 2006, 11:35 PM
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I know my lungs are very very sensetive to chulk dust,


timstich


Aug 17, 2006, 12:06 AM
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In reply to:
Take a look at the material safety data sheet here. It sounds pretty serious.
    [*:1b51383761]Avoid breathing vapors, or dusts. Use with adequate ventilation.
    [*:1b51383761]First Aid measures: INHALATION: Remove to fresh air. If not breathing, give artificial respiration. If breathing is difficult, give oxygen.

-Jay

"Avoid contact with eyes, skin, and clothes. Wash thoroughly after handling. Keep container closed."

http://multimedia.belointeractive.com/.../images/manu1002.jpg


sungam


Aug 17, 2006, 3:34 AM
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Someone, please, someone, give shanz a trophy!

-Magnus


Partner paige_tpm1


Aug 17, 2006, 5:22 AM
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I have bad allergies and have had to take allergy medicine before I go to the gym or I will be hacking the stuff up all night.

An evening at the gym with bad allergies turned into a funny story. I had taken my allergy meds but for some reason couldn't stop scratching my face, nose, etc. I walk into the bathroom and see my face beat red with rashes (from everywhere I had scratched w. chalk on my hands); I'm allergic to the chalk or something in it. :lol:

I also have bad allergies. Is there anything you do other than dose up on meds religiously before outdoor climbs? I have used Claritin for years, but was curious about the tablets you can take without water. I figure these might be a life saver if I get somewhere to climb and my allergies are just awful, pop one and I'm on my way (I get migranes that sneak up on me like that, ugh). I imagine they don't taste so hot but if they get the job done.

I'm sorry you've got bad allergies too :?


jt512


Aug 17, 2006, 8:22 AM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
Take a look at the material safety data sheet here. It sounds pretty serious.
    [*:0faba9bb23]Avoid breathing vapors, or dusts. Use with adequate ventilation.
    [*:0faba9bb23]First Aid measures: INHALATION: Remove to fresh air. If not breathing, give artificial respiration. If breathing is difficult, give oxygen.

-Jay

"Avoid contact with eyes, skin, and clothes. Wash thoroughly after handling. Keep container closed."

If we just kept the container closed in the first place, there would be no problem at all.

Jay


joshy8200


Aug 17, 2006, 8:30 AM
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Chalk is not going to damage your lungs like asbestos or smoking. The particles of chalk are far to large to be taken deeply into the branches of the airway and get stuck. The chalk dust will just be captured by mucous and cilia to be eventually cleared (if your respiratory system works properly).

However...viruses, bacteria, and other allergens can be carried on the inhaled chalk.


joshy8200


Aug 17, 2006, 8:38 AM
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As a climber and a pulmonologist I have looked into the issue of chalk dust and lung disease fiarly extensively.

Chalk dust (calcium carbonate) is considered to be a relatively inert when compared to very bioactive dusts such as asbestose and silica. It has been used in controlled experiments to assess the effect of inert dusts on the sinuses. This is appropriate since the particles are typically of larger size, very few of which make it past the naso/oropharynx. Chalk dust significantly impairs the ability of the nasal passages to clear secretions and results in increased congestion and discomfort. With regards to the effect of chalk on the lungs, there have been a few case reports (particularly in Japan) that have linked a few school teachers with interstitial lung disease to chalk exposure. They did this by measuring the amount of chalk in the teachers lungs on autopsy and comparing them to others with interstitial lung disease without chalk exposure. It's not surprising that there have been very few cases reported of chalk causing ILD (interstitial lung disease) due to its inertness. This makes it very similar to coal dust, where relatively large and constant exposures are needed to result in lung disease. This is very different from dusts like silica and asbestose where single large exposures have caused acute respiratory failure and death. Of course it's bad to make too many assumptions concerning the cimilarity of coal to chalk, however it's probably safe to say that ILD from chalk exposure would likely occur only after very prolonged and heavy exposure.

The issue with asthma is somewhat different. Upper/large airway exposure even to completely inert dusts has been shown to trigger asthma and COPD exacerbations. Every time SLC gets a big ugly inversion, I get multiple calls from many patients with exacerbations of their obstructive lung disease. This type of reaction can lead to chronic airway inflammation with potentially dire consequences if left unchecked, however the progression will not be asymptomatic.

With regards to wood dusts, the particles are relatively large and almost never get past the upper airways. Studies have shown an increase in the frequency of nasal/sinus adenocarcinomas, however the increased rate of laryngeal, tracheal and lung cancers is very small and orders of magnitude less than the risk due to smoking. It's odd how so many of the people I've diagnosed with lung cancer refuse to believe the effect of smoking cigarettes for 30 years is the cause rather than [insert conspiracy theory here].

My advise:
-use a chalk fan indoors
-climb outdoors more
-don't smoke


jt512


Aug 17, 2006, 8:41 AM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
As a climber and a pulmonologist I have looked into the issue of chalk dust and lung disease fiarly extensively.

Chalk dust (calcium carbonate) is considered to be...

As a climber and a pulmonologist, one would think that mtn_eagle would know that climbing/gymnastic chalk is magnesium carbonate, not calcium carbonate.

Jay


krusher4


Aug 17, 2006, 8:51 AM
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Hi, I'm a climber. I risk my life for this sport a few times a week and I'm fine with that. But, I want to know will chalk hurt me? WTF man!!!! Sorry I don't care how new you are to the sport, don't be such a freaking AHHH never mind.


mturner


Aug 17, 2006, 12:08 PM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
I have bad allergies and have had to take allergy medicine before I go to the gym or I will be hacking the stuff up all night.

An evening at the gym with bad allergies turned into a funny story. I had taken my allergy meds but for some reason couldn't stop scratching my face, nose, etc. I walk into the bathroom and see my face beat red with rashes (from everywhere I had scratched w. chalk on my hands); I'm allergic to the chalk or something in it. :lol:

I also have bad allergies. Is there anything you do other than dose up on meds religiously before outdoor climbs? I have used Claritin for years, but was curious about the tablets you can take without water. I figure these might be a life saver if I get somewhere to climb and my allergies are just awful, pop one and I'm on my way (I get migranes that sneak up on me like that, ugh). I imagine they don't taste so hot but if they get the job done.

I'm sorry you've got bad allergies too :?

Claritin seems to work pretty well for me. That and a lot of liquids. I also try my best to stay out of small bouldering caves at the gym with lots of people and chalk floating around for long periods of time. I get up and move around as much as possible and get as much fresh air in between climbs as possible. I'm a boulderer but I've noticed rope climbing is much easier on my allergies.


billcoe_


Aug 17, 2006, 12:19 PM
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Try to minimise the use of the stuff and that way I won't have to breath your chalk dust.

For years no one thought that the dust in a coal mine was a health issue.

Long term studies of chalk hasn't been done, and you won't know until it's too late, so why not go easy on the stuff now?

That's my approach.


timstich


Aug 17, 2006, 2:18 PM
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Lungs are bad. They make people breathe and stuff. That's not good.


ja1484


Aug 17, 2006, 2:25 PM
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Nothing your body can't handle, so long as you give it adequate time away from chalky environments.


Partner paige_tpm1


Aug 17, 2006, 2:36 PM
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In reply to:
Claritin seems to work pretty well for me. That and a lot of liquids. I also try my best to stay out of small bouldering caves at the gym with lots of people and chalk floating around for long periods of time. I get up and move around as much as possible and get as much fresh air in between climbs as possible. I'm a boulderer but I've noticed rope climbing is much easier on my allergies.

Thanks for the tips! I really enjoy going to the gym by myself and just attacking bouldering problems. I'm no good but I have a hell of a time watching all the awesome climbers do their thing, it's beautiful.

Appreciate the feedback :D


zeke_sf


Aug 17, 2006, 2:36 PM
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:lol: wow! this thread has everything. my initial thought was "Jgill HAS to get in on this" and scroll, scroll...there he is! then the funny ensues...white lung? chalk habits? more, please!

the only thing that pisses me off about chalk is when people leave huge bird crap looking piles at the base of climbs. it might effect their breathing/lungs when I wrap a firm grip around the throat and...who am I kidding? i'm a lover.


sky7high


Aug 17, 2006, 3:14 PM
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Take a look at the material safety data sheet here. It sounds pretty serious.
    [*:212dbe53d9]Avoid breathing vapors, or dusts. Use with adequate ventilation.
    [*:212dbe53d9]First Aid measures: INHALATION: Remove to fresh air. If not breathing, give artificial respiration. If breathing is difficult, give oxygen.

-Jay

Oh come on, I constantly use dangerous chemicals, and naturally read the MSDS for everything. that part about inhalation is included in EVERY single one of them. even the water MSDS, ALso, the other MSDS fragments in the thread are overstatements, if every chemical was as dangerous as the MSDS indicates, life on Earth would never have happened this way.

so stop being so paranoid and go climb somethin.


ja1484


Aug 17, 2006, 3:23 PM
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Guys, even water has an MSDS and an LD50. I agree with Sky7High - go climb something.

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