Sodium silicate is a chemical compound found in household cleaning products and pesticides. It is also a common ingredient used in fertilizers and is one of the ingredients in Cascade dish soap. Sodium silicate must be handled carefully because it has several hazardous effects on the body.
Inhaling sodium silicate can cause severe irritation of mucous membranes and upper respiratory tract. Large concentrations of this compound can cause permanent lung damage. Symptoms that can occur include difficulty breathing, a burning sensation in the throat and chest, and headache.
If swallowed, sodium silicate is a strong alkaline irritant that can cause burns to all parts of the digestive system from the lips and mouth to the stomach. This irritation will cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. In some cases, swallowing the material may cause burns to the upper airway as well.
Skin and Eyes
Exposure to the skin will cause a chemical burn resulting in severe redness, itching and pain. The burn can range from mild to a full-thickness burn. Contact with the eyes will cause intense burning and pain. Possible damage to the eye tissues can occur.