There are various diseases associated with exposure to asbestos. However, you should know that the most common diseases associated with asbestos start in a person’s lungs. Because of this, there are certain asbestos symptoms you can look for in a person to see if he or she is suffering from an asbestos lung disease.
Shortness of breath – Are you frequently running out of breath? Can’t you even go up one flight of stairs without panting or wheezing? Shortness of breath is frequently a symptom of asbestos illnesses. This is because the asbestos fibers inside your body have irritated your lungs to a point that scar tissue has already formed around the air sacs of your lungs. This means that oxygen can’t travel from one air sac to another. This means that you are processing oxygen very inefficiently.
Because of this, you need to take breaths more frequently. A problem with this asbestos symptom lies in the fact that it increases over time. Let’s say that today you can’t manage to walk for 10 feet without getting shortness of breath. The next day, you won’t even be able to accomplish 5 without stopping. If you experience this asbestos symptom then maybe it’s time to go see a doctor for a thorough examination.
Coughing – Another common asbestos symptom would be coughing. This symptom is triggered by the fact that the small asbestos fibers which accumulate in your lungs do irritate the organ tissue. Because of this, you feel an irritation in every part of your respiratory system. You cough as a reflex action to try and clear your lungs of the asbestos fibers, but it is no use, and you just keep coughing and coughing without actually relieving the irritation. If you experience this, then you might want to get an x-ray to see if there are any asbestos fibers in your lungs. Although a lot of diseases include coughing in their list of common symptoms, exposure to asbestos and a cough should definitely be investigated thoroughly.
An asbestos symptom that could come with coughing would be coughing up blood. Bloody sputum would actually indicate that the irritation of your lungs has gotten to a point that the lungs are actually wounded. This actually happens when the asbestos fibers themselves get moved around and cut into the lungs. When you cough up blood, things are very serious and it is important to find a doctor immediately.
Chest pains – This asbestos symptom is also caused by severe irritation and wounding of the lungs. Although asbestos fibers do cause a lot of damage to the lungs, sometimes, the lungs cause the damage to themselves. This is because the lungs often try to alleviate the irritation automatically using the body’s defense mechanism. However, with asbestos fivers, this has a different effect altogether. With asbestos fibers, the involuntary action of the lungs just causes the tissue to become even more irritated and could sometimes lead to wounding. Since the lungs become even more irritated, this triggers another round of reflexive actions and the cycle goes on and on. This type of asbestos symptom can be the most difficult to deal with as internal pain can be very unbearable.
Increased sputum – If you are experiencing an increase in the amount of your sputum, then you have to realize that this asbestos symptom too is caused by your body’s efforts to alleviate its discomfort. By increasing the production of sputum, your lungs hope to wash away whatever the irritant is. Unfortunately, however, asbestos fibers tend to cling much tighter than that. Because of this, all that results is you having to spit a lot more often.
Weight loss – A sudden drop in weight could be very bad indeed if it is a symptom of asbestos illnesses. This is because sudden weight loss often indicates that the disease may have already spread out to other parts of the body. If a person who has been exposed to asbestos suddenly loses a lot of weight, then you really ought to get him or her to the hospital.
These are just some of the symptoms you should keep an eye out for if ever you have been exposed to asbestos in the past. Remember, however, that some asbestos symptoms only appear when the disease is in its advanced stages so just to be sure, try to get a regular check up.