If you think that you are suffering from silicosis, you should make an appointment to see your doctor without delay. He or she will be likely to ask you about your work history to help determine if silicosis is a probable cause of your symptoms and then prescribe treatment or refer you to a specialist if necessary.
If your silicosis has developed sufficiently to cause permanent scarring of your lungs (known as fibrosis), then this cannot be reversed, but the resulting symptoms can be alleviated through several treatment methods.
What are the best ways to treat silicosis?
The first and most obvious step is to avoid any further exposure to silica dust, because continued exposure will only worsen your condition. As it takes roughly 10 to 20 years between the initial exposure and the symptoms developing, you may not be in the same job that originally caused your illness.
However, if you are in the same industry, you may still be being exposed to hazardous substances daily. Ideally, your job should be something where the risk of being exposed to silica dust (or any other dust known to cause forms of pneumoconiosis) is kept at a minimum.
Smoking will also make your condition worse, as well as having a negative impact on your general respiratory health, so you should try your best to stop, if at all possible. There are many resources available to help smokers quit, such as nicotine replacement therapy, the NHS's Stop Smoking Service, and online support groups.
Other treatments for silicosis include:
- Medication to reduce inflammation in the lungs (known as bronchodilators)
- Additional oxygen if you are suffering severe breathing difficulties
- Cough suppressants
- Antibiotics if you develop a lung infection
- Physiotherapy of the chest can help to remove mucus
- A lung transplant, which is recommended only in the most severe cases
Diagnosed with silicosis? Claim compensation with Thompsons
Unfortunately, silicosis is an incurable condition. While the above treatments will certainly help you deal with your symptoms, you will not be able to recover your fully-functioning respiratory health. If your illness was caused by hazardous work conditions, you may feel that your suffering is at least partly due to another party's negligence. In this case, you may be able to seek justice in the form of a compensation claim against your employer, whether former or current.
Thompsons Solicitors have dealt with the claims of many clients with respiratory diseases, such as silicosis. Our specialist lawyers approach each claim with care and sensitivity, providing clients with straightforward, honest advice to make the whole process go as smoothly as possible. We will make every effort to ensure that you receive the redress you deserve, hopefully allowing you to move forward with your life as quickly as possible so that you can focus on treating your condition.
Call us today on 0800 0891331 to get in touch with the legal expert who is right for you. For your added peace of mind, we offer a No Win No Fee Solicitors package, so you can rest assured that you won't have to pay any unnecessary legal feel in the case that your claim is unsuccessful.