Mica is a colorless, odorless solid that easily flakes into powder. It is typically used in industrial settings as electrical insulation, and in the creation of roofing shingles, wallpaper, plastics, and paint. Like a powder, it is pearlescent and satiny — an excellent that also makes it a common ingredient in mineral cosmetics where it provides a glittery effect.
Though mica is safe as a good, its powder or dust can cause both short and long-term health problems. In some people, mica can have the immediate aftereffect of irritating the optical eyes and skin, causing redness and itching. Inhaling mica can cause wheezing, shortness, and coughing of breath as it irritates the mucous membranes coating the lungs.
For connection with the eye or skin, the area should be flushed with clean water for at least a quarter-hour. In cases of inhalation causing acute symptoms, the person should be moved to an area with fresh air and given oxygen if breathing is difficult. Repeated high exposure to mica can cause fibrosis in the lungs, where in fact the constant irritation from inhaling mica dirt causes skin damage of the lung tissue.
This leads to the persistent coughing and shortness of breath typical of pneumoconiosis, an illness often observed in people who work in mines where they are exposed to coal dirt. The carcinogenic ramifications of mica are unclear but considering other known health results it is best to avoid publicity as much as possible probably. Wearing protective clothing, gloves, goggles, and …