Painting plays a pivotal role in numerous residential, commercial, and industrial projects, offering a career path with distinct advantages. It doesn’t require expensive formal education, grants the flexibility of self-employment, and typically boasts a steady demand for services. However, the occupation also carries its share of challenges. The physically demanding nature of painting can exact a toll on the body over time, with an ever-present risk of injury. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, construction and maintenance painters have one of the highest injury rates across professions.
Painters are exposed to a range of health and safety risks, including the inhalation of toxic fumes. Many paints, varnishes, and solvents contain high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can lead to neurological problems, asthma, cancer, fertility issues, and other health concerns. Dust inhalation is another occupational hazard, especially for those working on construction sites where exposure to dust from sanding, drywall installation, and other activities can result in asthma, respiratory problems, and sinus issues. Shockingly, recent research indicates that professional painters face a 20 percent higher overall risk of cancer and a 30 percent higher risk of bladder cancer.