Dangers of Asbestos

Topics: Asbestos, Cancer, Mesothelioma Pages: 1 (358 words) Published: June 19, 2013
Asbestos refers to naturally occurring minerals that were frequently used in building materials due to their fire-resistant properties. When asbestos is cut it can release a fine dust made up of tiny asbestos fibers. Extensive exposure to asbestos fibers can cause significant lung damage in people who inhale asbestos dust. If you have been exposed to asbestos, it may take up to 30 or 40 years before you begin to experience side effects from breathing asbestos fibers. If you develop asbestos side effects, they may be indicative of a more serious lung disease, such as pleural plaque, asbestosis, lung cancer or mesothelioma. Inhalation of asbestos can cause the tiny fibers within asbestos dust to become lodged within the delicate tissue of the lungs. These fibers can damage the lungs, causing scar tissue or thick, fibrous plaques to develop within the lungs. If this occurs, you can develop significant breathing difficulties or wheezing as side effects of asbestos, explain health professionals at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If this occurs, you may find it difficult to perform normal tasks, such as walking up a flight of stairs, without breathing heavily or gasping for air. Left untreated, such side effects progressively increase in severity and can cause some people to stop breathing. Asbestos inhalation can irritate and inflame the lining of the throat. This may cause you to develop a hoarse or raspy voice that persists or becomes worse over time. Certain people also develop a sore throat that makes swallowing difficult. Asbestos fibers can become embedded deep within the tissue of your lungs or stomach. Over time, these tissues can accrue scar tissues, which can produce painful sensations within the chest or abdomen that are dull or achy. These painful symptoms may be most apparent when you attempt to inhale and can occur in conjunction with cough or breathing difficulties. Extended exposure to asbestos dust can cause significant,...
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