Based on your work, you may find yourself regularly exposed to toxic substances. As noted on the John Hopkins Medicine website, job-related health issues affecting the lungs reflect the primary cause of U.S. occupational diseases.
Contrary to what many individuals believe, the risks of developing an occupational lung disease affect a wide range of jobs besides coal mining. Almost any type of work that exposes you to fibers, dust particles or fumes could cause lung disease.
What symptoms may show signs of job-based lung disease?
You may not develop the same type or degree of symptoms as another individual working under similar conditions. Shortness of breath and frequent coughing, however, typically reflect the most common symptoms. Tightness in your chest, abnormal breathing or chest pain may also show as symptoms.
A professional diagnosis and opinion provided by your doctor could provide the most reliable assessment of what your symptoms represent. A range of diagnostic procedures could provide you with a realistic determination of what effect your work environment may have had on your respiratory health.
What steps may I take to protect my health?
As noted on the MayoClinic.org website, you should see a doctor if you experience any respiratory issues and find yourself exposed to harmful substances at work. Based on your doctor’s advice, you may need to discuss the issue with your employer. As described by the Nebraska Legislature, a medical condition caused by an occupational disease could qualify you for workers’ comp benefits.
An occupational disease affecting your respiratory system may lead to a serious medical condition. In addition to losing your ability to work, you may find yourself unable to carry on normal day-to-day activities. You may take steps to help avoid a disabling medical issue by giving careful consideration to your health care options and workers’ comp rights.