Occupational Exposure & Lymphomas: A Complete Guide to Dangers & Remedies

occupational hazard death

Last Updated December 20th, 2021

What is occupational exposure?

A person’s occupation or profession holds critical importance in his/her life. Not only does it keep the socio-economic wheels running, but it also provides an individual with a sense of meaning, purpose, and accomplishment. Currently, the global workforce is around 3 billion strong. And most recent statistics reveal that a major chunk of this largely populous crowd spends 50% of their waking hours “at the desk”.

Thus, assuming that the kind of profession one is engaged is not only brings in the moolah but is also a significant factor in shaping the physical (and mental) health is not a mistake. The physical and mental manifestations of both the positives and the negatives of your workplace cannot be dismissed as inconsequential. More often than not, it is the negatives of the workplace ambiance that become influential in determining the quality of health.

occupational hazard deathAn occupational hazard is a rather sad by-product of a rather unsafe, risky, and stressful work environment that leads to both acute and chronic health conditions. It may arise from something as deceptively trivial as a non-ergonomically designed chair (on which you spend months and years sitting) slowly misaligning your spinal curvature. Or, it could be a result of dangerously high noise levels you encounter on a daily basis while working as a mechanic or a commercial pilot. Other significantly deleterious occupational hazards range from exposure to deadly pathogens and other biohazards while working in hospitals or labs to the toxic fume inhalation.

All in all, your 9-to-5 could be exposing you to toxins – some more deadly than the others.  The exposure to these undesirable elements at your workplace is what occupational exposure actually is. The logical question that pops up here is – How big is an issue is this? And how complicated or dangerous can it get?

Let’s find out.

How often can your job lead to an ER visit?

How often do you hear miners being trapped under layers of debris during their routine digging operations? Or, a sudden toxic gas leak poisoning an entire crew of workers in a factory? What about the sudden crash in stock markets leading to heart attack among those who lost millions? And does a severe case of PTSD arising due to experiencing military combat count?

Yes, tragically enough all of these debilitating and potentially fatal conditions are a result of unsafe working environment. As per the WHO:

  • Around 78 million deaths every year can be attributed to occupational hazards
  • Occupational falls and accidents amount up to 374 million in number
  • Occupational exposure-related deaths are roughly 5% of all the deaths occurring across the globe.
  • 3% of these deaths could be attributed to disease caused by occupational exposure and the rest are related to accidents and falls.
  • The major areas of such diseases include respiratory, circulatory, and malignancy, aka, cancers.
  • A whopping 66% of all occupation-related hazards – diseases, accidents, disability, and mortality were observed in Asian countries.

These statistics paint a grim picture – a picture that speaks of how your vital organs – your heart, kidneys, lungs and many more could be corroding away as a result of an unhealthy work environment. Of all the ways the toxins can enter your body, contaminated air remains one of the most elusive and difficult to control paths of toxicity. In fact, airborne toxins can lead to all three types of diseases mentioned above – cardiac, respiratory, and cancers. But which ones are the diseases that arise out of toxic air?

Fatal occupational exposures

Silicosis

occupational hazrd riskOne of the deadliest diseases born out of adverse silica exposure, such as in case of mining or construction work is silicosis. It is an incurable disease that affects the lungs. It is a result of increased silica inhalation and it also goes by the names “Potter’s rot” or “Grinder’s asthma”. Now classified as a human carcinogen, silica is mostly made up of quartz dust, something which is widely present in the air we breathe around factories, blast furnaces, and construction sites.

The fine silica particles tend to settle in the lungs, in the alveolar sacs to be precise, thus blocking the air pathways. These dust particles also lead to an increased level of inflammation. The characteristics of this deadly condition include difficulty in breathing, excessive wheezing, bluish discoloration of the skin (lack of oxygen), and even tuberculosis. In extreme cases, it may lead to lung cancer. WHO estimates that between 1968 to 2002, more than 74 million people lost their lives owing to harmful silica exposure.

Chromium Toxicity

Though chromium is one of the most commonly occurring elements in the earth’s surface, toxic exposure to hexavalent chromium is could be deadly for you. Chromium toxicity, which is widely observed in areas of work such as metallurgy and electroplating, can occur via various channels. Toxic chromium traces have been found in water, soil, and air (chromate dust) – all of which can induce potentially lethal symptoms.

Chromate dust is a leading factor in causing malignancy. Occupational exposure to this is observed in dye factories. Cancer arising due to chromium salts (leather and tanning industries) usually affects the skin and the lungs. Other consequences to such toxic exposure include – dermatitis, bronchitis, liver damage, teeth discoloration, and even cardiac arrest.

Understanding lymphoma

Lymphoma is the malignancy of the lymphatic cells, aka, cancer affecting the lymphocytes. These form the immune system of the human body and are found in the lymph nodes, spleen, bone marrow, and thymus.  There are two different types of lymphoma affecting the human body.

Burkitt lymphoma

Often referred to as the most rapidly advancing cancer, Burkitt lymphoma affects immune cells ( B-lymphocytes) leading to tumor formation in lymph nodes. The common physical characteristics of this type of lymphoma are tumor (and thus swelling) formation near the jawline and oral cavity, and swollen lymph nodes. The medical term for Burkitt’s lymphoma is Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. 88% of all cases of lymphoma fall under this category.

occupational hazard cancerIt usually affects people with compromised immunity and those who have been infected by the EBV or Epstein-Barr Virus.  Those who have been occupationally exposed to benzene and pesticides have a higher risk of developing this type of malignancy. Several studies have indicated that people associated with farming and agriculture and glass forming showed a higher incidence of this disease. Similarly, those who are involved in food and beverage production, paper mills, tobacco industries and/or have high exposure to fuel exhaust and heavy metals end up showing higher signs of this malignancy.

Hodgkin ’s disease

This is a deadly blood cancer where the malignant B –lymphocytes spread rapidly via lymph nodes and end up affecting the vital organs and the bone marrow too. The early symptoms of Hodgkin’s disease include swelling at the site of lymph nodes, excessive sweating, shortness of breath, and persistent cough. It constitutes roughly 12% of all lymphoma cases. Every year in the USA, more than 8,000 cases of Hodgkin’s disease are reported.

Significant occupational toxins associated with heightened risk of Hodgkin’s disease are welding by-products and creosotes (kind of flammable wood tar). Additionally, exposure to uranium and radium is also a significant risk factor.  Chemical and toxic dust that could increase the risk of Hodgkin’s disease are thinner and white spirits, rubber industry chemicals, wood preservatives, phenoxy acids, DDT, and sawdust.

Effective remedies for common occupational damage

As mentioned before, the symptoms of both silicosis and chromium toxicity can be chronic and disabling. Fortunately, in addition to the usual medical approach there are a number of home remedies you can try to curb the symptoms of these conditions:

Dermatitis

  • Aloe vera: The gel derived from the stems of the aloe plant is rich in antibacterial and antifungal properties. It hydrates dry skin and reduces itching and redness. It has a soothing effect on the skin and can be safely used in case of a number of skin conditions. Be careful while choosing the right aloe product for yourself. Go for the ones which are free from alcohol and artificial perfumes.
  • Coconut oil: Cold pressed virgin coconut oil is an excellent remedy for treating dermatitis. Coconut oil is an effective humectant (adds moisture to skin) and aids faster relief from the itchy symptoms.

Wheezing and shortness of breath

  • Occupational hazard remedyWarm tea: Warm herbal teas such as green tea or ginger tea can help reducing wheezing symptoms fast. Warm fluids help in loosening up the mucus deposition in the chest and helps in coughing it out to get relief. Try adding pure honey to the tea for better results. Honey is a natural antibiotic and might help control the spread of bacterial infection in the lungs if any.
  • Steam therapy: Mix a few drops of essential oils such as eucalyptus in water, heat it, and inhale the steam. This method has been used widely to get rid of stuffy nose and chest congestion. The steam opens up blocked air pathways thus facilitating immediate relief from shortness of breath.

Cough

  • Ginger: By far one of the best remedies for cough and other respiratory symptoms, ginger can be used in a number of ways to help get rid of frequent coughing. It can be used for both dry and wet cough. You can consume ginger in the form of tea, paste, powder, or even supplements (pill form). It can be safely consumed in the raw form too.
  • Bromelain: Many of you might not know this – bromelain is the main constituent of pineapple. This enzyme is both anti-inflammatory and mucolytic (mucus-removing) properties. You can consume it in pill form or even try drinking freshly squeezed pineapple juice every day to witness long-lasting results.

Tuberculosis-like symptoms

  • Vitamin D: Research has indicated that there is a strong link between vitamin D supplementation and relief from TB symptoms. What vitamin D does is that it reduces bacterial activity in the respiratory system and helps eject out these toxins. Vitamin D can be consumed directly through diet; foods such as fatty fish, beef liver, fortified cereal, and mushrooms are great. You can also ask your physician for vitamin D pills.
  • Rhodiola Rosea: This miracle plant extract can help the human body get rid of all types of toxins – physical, chemical, and biological. It is touted as one of the best home remedies for any kind of occupational disease. It improves immune system response, lowers inflammation, and has minimal side-effects.

Pulmonary edema or fluid-accumulation in lungs

  • Reduce salt intake: Table salt or sodium chloride, though an essential part of the diet, can also drive up the blood pressure and increase the blood volume. This worsens the symptoms of edema. One must reduce salt intake in such cases.
  • Tobacco cessation: It goes without saying that tobacco consumption is deleterious to respiratory health. Quit smoking immediately if you have been diagnosed with a pulmonary condition.
  • Cilantro: This fresh green herb has more uses than just as a garnish. Cilantro juice and extract work wonder in case of edema. It’s a natural diuretic and thus can flush out excess fluid deposition. You can also drink dandelion tea for its strong diuretic effects.

Skin ulcers

  • Garlic: Just like ginger, garlic is yet another easy and effective home remedy in treating a number of skin ailments. Rich in anti-microbial properties, it can also prevent recurrence of skin ulcers. Chew raw garlic pods daily or pop in garlic supplements for fast relief from skin ulcers.
  • Turmeric: Turmeric is hailed globally as an all-rounder home remedy for a diverse range of ailments. Its strong anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties help heal painful ulcers and also prevent secondary bacterial infections.

Sinusitis

  • Neti pot: This small pot resembling an oil lamp has been used in opening up nasal congestion since ages. A gift of Ayurveda, neti pot is usually filled with sterile water and used to clear up the sinus blockage. It can easily flush out bacteria and toxins, not to mention mucus and help you breathe freely.
  • Saline spray: It is a well-known fact that microbes cannot survive in saline conditions. Saline nasal spray which primarily contains salt and baking soda can be used to unclog your nose. Repeat 2-3 times a day to observe the best results.

Liver disorders

  • High fiber diet: This type of diet is a mandate for people suffering from liver afflictions. High fiber content binds to bile and aids proper digestion without straining the liver. It also cut down the cholesterol deposition. Whole grains such as quinoa and green leafy veggies such as kale are excellent foods for better liver health.
  • Pomegranate: These bright-red pulpy beads are great for the body Detox, especially liver. Pomegranate tea/juice is rich in antioxidants and vitamin C which boosts immunity and aids quicker regeneration of hepatic cells.
  • Castor Oil: This oil can be used in the form of hot oil packs and placed on the right side of the abdomen. This helps the oil particles to permeate through the skin, reach the bloodstream, and heal damaged liver tissues.

Cardiac issues

  • Almonds: Almond and other nuts are great sources of HDL or heart-healthy cholesterol and omega 3 fats that lower bodily inflammation. Regular consumption of soaked almonds will keep your heart disease-free and pumping for a long time.
  • Coq10: This powerful enzyme available in pill form can help your body tissues to regenerate and grow in a healthy manner. It can easily reverse the adverse effects of atherosclerosis and cardiac inflammation.
  • Selenium: Studies reveal that when elderly people suffering from heart conditions took Coq10 enzyme supplements with selenium pills, they observed a better result. Selenium is a trace mineral which is also an active antioxidant. It can cut the risk of death by heart diseases by 50%!

Symptom management for lymphoma

  • Ginger: Helps in relieving nausea caused by chemotherapy
  • Oregano and parsley: High antioxidant content; helps fight cancer cells
  • Omega 3s: Improves immune response
  • Milk Thistle: One of the most effective Detoxes for liver
  • Green Tea Extract: Anti-cancer and anti-tumor in nature
  • Olive leaf extract: Best treatment for oral inflammation caused by chemotherapy
  • Wild caught fatty fish: Rich in protein and omega 3 fatty acids
  • Kale: Nutrient-rich green superfood with high iron content

TL;DR?

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Myelography Myelography is an important diagnostic tool that is used to investigate and identify abnormalities in the spine and…
APL IgM Test
Antiphospholipid Antibody(APL)-IgM test The antiphospholipid antibodies are specific protein in the body directed against the phospholipids. It is used to detect…
Isagenix diet weight loss
How are BMI and BMR different and what do these numbers mean? BMI and BMR are two important metrics that provide a clear picture of your body's metabolism and also…
eating disorder anorexia
Eating Disorders: Lifestyle choice or a psychological condition? Is eating disorder just a harmless bad habit? Or does it represent grim psychological disorders? Do you want…
Moringa drink
Moringa: This could be the most nutrient-dense food known to us! Moringa is a lush green tree brimming with over 90 essential nutrients required for a healthy mind and…
Cordyceps: How the Caterpillar fungus works as a proven cancer-shield Strange as it may sound, but cordyceps or "caterpillar fungus", a fungus variety native to the Himalayas may…
Coconut sugar: What is it and is it healthier than table sugar? In the long list of things that the wonderful coconut gives us, coconut sugar is another remarkable addition.…
Trisodium Phosphate: How a paint thinner made its way into your breakfast Ever thought how toxic chemicals find their way into our foods? How can they harm our body? And…
Epley maneuver: Why is this the best protection from the symptoms of vertigo? Epley maneuver is an exercise that can treat the symptoms of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).  It was…
Erythritol: A healthy sugar substitute or yet another marketing ploy? Erythritol is a popular choice of a healthy alternative sweetening agent in foods. But how healthy can a…
EEG
Electroencephalogram – EEG EEG or electroencephalogram is a diagnostic tool used to access the functioning of neurons and brain activity to…
colposcopy
Colposcopy Colposcopy is a simple, quick and non- invasive diagnostic tool to look closely inside the vulva, vagina, and…
Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase (G6PD) test Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) is an enzyme that is found in every cell of the body and it plays…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
carrageenan seaweed
Carrageenan: How a simple seaweed extract could better your gut health & immunity Eat more ice cream to prevent cold and flu? –With carrageenan you get one simple seaweed extract that…
nutritional yeast bread
Nutritional Yeast : How can a fungi culture be good for your body? Nutritional yeast: How a simple culture of fungi can transform your skin, digestion, immunity , and much more.…
glutamine workout
Glutamine: Why is this the right choice for muscle-gain supplement? Glutamine can help you gain muscles and build higher immunity. Read more to find out how you can…
green poop causes
Green poop : What are the reasons and how can you correct it Ever sneak a peek down the toilet only to shockingly find green poop? Why does our poop turn…
kefir bottle
Kefir: Top reasons why this probiotic drink should be consumed by you Yet another remarkable fermented food, kefir is a much healthier version of yogurt. These chewy white grains can…
Is bronchitis contagious? And how to prevent this infection? It is acute bronchitis that is contagious which means you can contract it from another person or you…
malarial antigen test
Malaria Antigen Test A malaria antigen test is a rapid diagnostic test (RDT) that can detect malarial antigens (proteins) in your…
Tight phimosis ring
Phimosis Read to know everything about phimosis, types, symptoms, treatment, risks and prognosis for patients with this condition.
occupational hazards types
Occupational Hazards: How to vouch for your health at your workplace Occupational hazards affect millions worldwide. Chemical spills, faulty wires, deadly pathogen, and work-stress can happen anytime. Follow these…
Cayenne: The remarkable benefits of these red hot chili peppers These may make you rush for a glass of water, but cayenne pepper is actually a healthy additive…
Love tea, hate tannins? Rooibos tea is just what you need The market is brimming with a multitude of herbal teas. But what makes rooibos tea (or red bush)…
BRAT Diet: What is the right way to follow this diarrhea-relieving diet? BRAT diet, a simple diet consisting of just bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast, can help you combat the…
What is the right way to take a pregnancy test? A pregnancy test is undertaken to determine if you have conceived. A home pregnancy test is the most…
Vagus nerve: 7 health benefits of stimulating the “gut-brain” connection As a matter of fact, there are two vagus nerves namely the left and the right but is…
liver cleanse detox
14 go-to foods that are best for a complete natural liver detox Liver cleanse can be achieved by just choosing or avoiding certain types of food. Liver itself is a detoxifying…
Barium-enema
Barium Enema Barium enema is also known as colon x-ray. Here, the patient is asked to consume small amount of…
Vitamin-D-blood-test
25-Hydroxy Vitamin D test 25-hydroxy Vitamin D test is a blood test used to measure the level of vitamin D in the…
blood elements analysis
Blood Element Analysis Test A blood element analysis is a blood test performed to measure the level of toxic elements such as…
Strep throat pain
Anti-Streptolysin-O Test The ASO or Anti-Streptolysin-O is a blood test designed to check for the presence of streptococcus bacterial infection…
Unbelievable health benefits of gooseberries (and a few tasty recipes) Gooseberries are antioxidant-rich tasty fruits that can be easily added in daily diet to improve overall health and…
liver detox facts
7 liver detox facts and why ignoring these could kill you! Are you taking care of this organ that handles over 500 different vital functions in your body? Your…
L-theanine attention
L-Theanine: Better sleep, higher focus, and many other benefits Did you know that L-theanine found in green tea can make you sleep better and be focused at…
Oil of Oregano: The one-stop essential oil you’ve been looking for Are you plagued by a weak immune system? High body inflammation accompanied by pain and infections? Why not…
Valerian Root: The best way to achieve tranquil sleep every night Valerian root is probably one of the oldest and safest way to cure your insomnia. Find out how…
Did you know drinking alkaline water could be the healthier choice for you? Ever wondered how safe is your drinking water in terms of pH? Recent studies have revealed that Alkaline…
Kava: Is it the healthy substitute for alcohol you have been waiting for? Native to the beautiful South Pacific islands, Kava is a famous beverage rooted in the local culture. It…
Goji berry: A traditional Chinese berry that packs the best of antioxidants Goji berry is an ancient berry that is considered to be power-packed with nutrients and antioxidants. Which means…
The Cabbage Soup Diet: The healthiest way to instant weight loss Cabbage soup diet rapid weight loss diet for those who want to shed those extra pounds in less…
shakeology woman
Meal replacement or protein drink? Learn all about Shakeology and its claims Shakeology from Beachbody claims to be the most suitable shake that can aid in weight loss, regulate blood…
GGt test
GGT – Gamma-Glutamyl Transferase Test GGT or gammaglutamyl transferase test is a liver function test that is used to detect the extent of…
C-Reactive Protein Test A CRP or c-reactive protein blood test is an important diagnostic tool used to determine the risk of…
free psa test
Free PSA Test The free PSA test is used to detect the level or percentage of free PSA in the body…
Thyroid disorders
Thyroid Profile Thyroid profile is a panel of blood tests performed to check if an individual is suffering from any…
shiitake mushrooms healthy
What are Shiitake Mushrooms and why should you eat them? Shiitake Mushrooms are well known for their smoky and robust taste. However, did you know they are replete…
DHEA wrinkles
DHEA: Now get unbelievable age defiance with this wonder hormone! DHEA is known popularly as the age-defying hormone. This supplement is widely used to slow down aging and…
How seitan proved to be a blessing in disguise for vegans worldwide Can only meat-eaters enjoy delicious juicy steaks and burgers? With seitan, the best meat substitute available today,even vegans…
Surgery or home-remedy; what is the right way to treat a burn The treatment of a burn injury depends on its severity. You can save a life by offering the…
phenytoin test
Phenytoin test Phenytoin is a drug that is administered mainly to epilepsy patients. The phenytoin blood test measures the level…
asab antisperm antibody test
Antisperm Antibody Test The ASAB or anti-sperm antibody test is a blood/semen test that analyzes the level of sperm-killing antibody protein…
AHBC Igm
Anti-Hepatitis B Core Antigen (AHBc) IgM Anti-hepatitis B core antigen (AHBC) IgM is an investigative procedure to detect the presence of IgM antibodies in…
hidden causes obesity
8 hidden causes of obesity you probably didn’t know! Did you know that around 2 billion people worldwide are either overweight or obese? Are you too a…
lose weight fast
12 easy and instant steps to successful weight loss Do you want to lose weight without losing your mind? Does weight loss always mean saying goodbye to…