Asbestos is a mineral that was used in products because it was inexpensive and durable. It was used in many products because it was resistant to heat and fire. It could also hold up against many chemical reactions. We know today that asbestos is not as great as everyone once thought. Today, it is considered to be a toxin and not something that should be used in everyday items. It is the cause of asbestos diseases. When the asbestos fibers are moved and they become airborne, they can be brought into the lungs when breathing the air. These fibers scar the lungs and cause a lung disease called asbestosis. This scarring of the lungs impacts breathing and limits the ability of oxygen to move through your bloodstream. An individual would never know they were exposed to asbestos until the symptoms begin to show. The symptoms do not appear until the disease has already begun developing. Asbestos is considered a lung disease because it mainly impacts the lungs and most of the symptoms related to the lungs.
While asbestos is mainly considered a lung disease, it can also impact other parts of the body, such as the colon, throat, and stomach. It has also been thought to cause cancers in other parts of the body. Symptoms do not typically begin to develop until anywhere from 10 to 30 years after exposure. Plaque on the lungs may indicate exposure to asbestos, but you can not determine if it is there without an x-ray or CT scan.
The common symptoms of asbestos impacting the lungs is shortness of breath, dry cough, wheezing, and chest pain. You may have a crackling noise when you breathe. You may have a thickening of the pleura of the lungs. You may have fluid in your lungs or other respiratory issues. You may have some other symptoms when asbestos begins to impact other parts of the body. You may begin to have swelling of the abdomen or pain in your pelvis or abdomen. You may have a hernia or an obstruction of your bowel. You may begin to have a loss of appetite and begin to lose weight. You may find that you are having difficulty swallowing and always feel hoarse. You may have nail deformities or clubbed fingers. This is a condition that causes your fingertips to enlarge.
If you would like more information on asbestos or the symptoms of asbestos, you can search online for helpful resources such as Asbestos.Net.