Chemical Inhalation

Your caregiver has diagnosed you as suffering from chemical inhalation. Inhaling chemical gas is dangerous. It causes an irritation of the linings of the breathing tubes within the lungs. If this irritation or reaction to the chemical is bad, it can cause difficulty breathing.

Do not return to the area of the chemical exposure until authorities tell you it is safe.

Chemical inhalation is often treated with observation. Observation may often be carried out at home. If the reaction has been severe, hospitalization may be required. Sometimes anti-inflammatory medicines are needed. These are medicines which decrease the inflammation in the lungs. If hospitalization is required, you will need to remain in the hospital until your breathing is close to normal and it is safe for you to go home.


  • You have a fever.

  • You have wheezing, difficulty breathing, continuous cough, nausea, or vomiting.

  • You have shortness of breath with your usual activities, or your heart seems to beat too fast with minimal exercise.

  • You become confused, irritable, or unusually sleepy. Have someone drive you to the emergency department or call 911. Do not drive yourself. A re-check will determine if hospitalization is needed for closer observation or treatment.