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What Is Bromine Poisoning?

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  • Written By: Rhonda Rivera
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 06 September 2014
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Bromine is a natural element that is liquid at room temperature and gas at high temperatures. Poisoning is rare but possible in various ways, such as consuming contaminated food or being directly exposed to bromine gas. Dizziness and cough are symptoms of inhaled bromine poisoning, while a burning sensation on the skin is a symptom of direct exposure to bromine gas. If the gas is in the air, the most important action is to move away from the gas quickly, after which the person should remove his or her clothing and bathe. People exposed to bromine for long periods of time may have long-term health problems.

A person can get bromine poisoning by consuming contaminated water or food, having skin exposed to bromine, or breathing in fumes of bromine gas. To consume contaminated goods, bromine would have to be accidentally released into a water supply. Bromine settles near the ground because it is heavier than air, so people are at risk of exposing their lower bodies to bromine following the release of bromine gas. In addition, if the gas is still high in the air, a person could inhale fumes to get bromine poisoning.

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Dizziness, cough, and irritation in the mouth, nose, or eyes are some symptoms of bromine poisoning. If a large amount of bromine was consumed, nausea and vomiting are key symptoms for which to look. Skin exposed directly to bromine usually feels cool for a moment, then starts to burn. Even if a person does not show obvious symptoms of bromine poisoning but poisoning is suspected, a medical professional should be seen.

If a person believes he or she was directly exposed to bromine, it is important to undress without lifting contaminated material over the head. Undressing should be immediately followed by thoroughly washing the body. Even if a person does not think he or she was directly exposed, it is best to seek fresh air and move away from the affected area. All removed clothing and personal effects should be handled as indirectly as possible and placed in plastic bags for disposal.

When bromine is breathed in, a person might experience long-term problems with his or her lungs. Due to systemic poisoning, a person might also experience damage to other vital organs. To avoid such problems, people should learn the symptoms of bromine poisoning and remove themselves from the source as quickly as possible. There is no cure or antidote for bromine poisoning, but medical professionals can help in other ways.

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stoneMason
Post 3

@burcidi-- Have you started seeing cherry angiomas (little red spots) on your skin lately?

If so, you might have bromine poisoning. Anxiety and thyroid problems are also symptoms of too much bromine exposure. One reason for hypothyroidism is not enough iodine. Iodine and bromine are similar elements and it has been shown that bromine can prevent the use of iodine by the body. This can eventually result in thyroid problems.

Bromine poisoning doesn't necessarily have to cause dizziness, coughing and vomiting. Those are symptoms that occur when there is severe poisoning from a large amount of bromine suddenly. Poisoning can also happen over a longer period of time and slowly.

literally45
Post 2

@burcidi-- I'm not sure.

You don't have signs of poisoning that suggest you have encountered bromine directly. I wasn't aware that bromine is added to food products. I knew that it's in some medicines and also some plastic products. But I don't know if the amount is high enough to cause poisoning.

I suppose if you were to consume these foods regularly, you could have accumulated bromine poisoning over time.

I think you should go back to your doctor and tell him about your concerns. If there really is such a risk, you may be able to prevent further complications.

burcidi
Post 1

I've recently been diagnosed with hypothyroid. My acne has also gotten really bad lately. Aside from this, I feel sluggish and have anxiety which I didn't used to have before.

Do you think I have bromine poisoning?

I don't think I've been exposed to bromine gas, but I heard that bromine is also found in food these days. Apparently, it's put into many soft drinks and pastries to maintain the flavor or something.

This is just so scary.

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