Warning Signs That You Are Infected From Asbestos
Perhaps the most important thing human beings do every single minute is breathing. It’s so simple and easy that we do it without realizing it. It’s natural, makes us feel good, and keeps us alive. But when breathing starts to get ragged and chest pains become an everyday occurrence, the precious breaths we breathe in and out begin to become the only thing we can think of. There are five common signs that indicate a person is infected with asbestos exposure. Continue reading to discover these common signs and symptoms now.
What Is An Asbestos Exposure?
A more common cause of thoracic weakening and failure is due to asbestos. It is a chronic lung disease that results from asbestos fibers adhering to the lung tissue and tunnels of alveoli, scarring and stiffening the lung, making contracting, or breathing, that much more difficult and uncomfortable. Individuals who are at a greater risk of having such a condition are those who have worked in construction and installation type jobs, such as mining, milling, or engineering. People who smoke also expedite the process because smoke further aggravates the thoracic cavity and lungs. It is important to remember that these symptoms will appear and become a real problem a couple decades past initial exposure. Most cases of this disease are in middle-aged patients.
Clubbing Of The Fingers And Toes
The hands can tell a story about an individual’s health, particularly the nails. Several studies have linked nail and finger abnormalities with a variety of lung and heart diseases. Clubbing of the hands occurs when the tissue beneath the fingernails thicken and harden, causing the nails to round out and protrude in a bulbous fashion. This is due to the lungs delivering insufficient oxygen to the blood, and a lack of oxygen reaching the hands and feet. If the nail looks abnormal or appears unfamiliar, as in it is not a hereditary trait, individuals are encouraged to seek out medical assistance, as the nails on the hands and feet can determine moderate to severe health implications, such as the development of a condition from asbestos exposure.
A Persistent, Dry Cough
As the asbestos fibers latch themselves to the lining of the lungs and alveoli, the lungs begin to lose their ability to properly function, such as inhaling, exhaling, and producing protective mucus for its lining. With this lack of a mucus membrane to protect the lungs, a dry and persistent cough develops, along with breathing difficulties. If a patient notices that they are coughing up blood or rust-colored phlegm, and are also experiencing shortness of breath and chest pain, they should consult with their physician immediately, as this can be an obvious symptom of mesothelioma, a terminal, asbestos-caused cancer.
Moderate To Extreme Fatigue
Fatigue is a tricky symptom to believe is related to a serious condition, as we all experience fatigue at different times in our lives. Fatigue can be experienced temporarily due to present stress at work or at home, insufficient sleep or just poor sleeping habits. The first thing a person thinks about when they experience fatigue is that it is not related to cancer, but rather they simply need more sleep. But if the fatigue is persistent and unusual for the person, it could be indicative of a more unfortunate circumstance, such as the development of a condition due to asbestos. Patients who are experiencing unusual levels of fatigue should consult their doctor and either have a sleep study performed to rule out sleeping problems or have a simple blood test done.
Shortness Of Breath
Same with fatigue, this symptom can be difficult to diagnose as an actual health condition. Everyone experiences shortness of breath at some point, whether it is from completing a mile run or climbing the stairs. But it is important to remember the differing degrees of persistence, activity, and usual routines. Having shortness of breath is indicative of more than just lung issues. The stiffening of the lungs is what causes coughing, discomfort, and shortness of breath associated with asbestos, as less oxygen is being delivered to the bloodstream. Considering the body relies on oxygen for energy, chronic breathing problems can lead to other symptoms, such as fatigue and weight loss.
Chest Tightness Or Pain
Perhaps the most severe symptom to have is chest pain and chest tightening. The problem does not necessarily mean that the individual is prone to a heart attack, as the pain experienced can range from the heart to the lungs, and to the stomach. It could also indicate muscle strains and anxiety. The reason why it is a symptom of asbestos exposure is due to the lungs overworking to function adequately as there is less oxygen being delivered to the blood, resulting in strain and irritation to the entire thoracic system. When the patient is struggling to breathe, even just a little bit, the body immediately feels this strain, resulting in chest pain.
There are a few important and realistic symptoms that every individual should be aware, especially if they were ever exposed to asbestos in their line of work. Stay proactive and aware of how your body normally operates and make sure to regularly visit your physician if you are concerned about possible exposure.