Is your hairdresser having respiratory problem? Do you know the reason?



Is your hairdresser coughing, sniffing and has a chronic respiratory problem?  Are you concerned about her health? She should consult a doctor immediately.

According to  a study  by Ümran Toru et al  smoking may aggravate occupational airway disease in hairdressers. Smoking increase both  respiratory complaints and decreased respiratory functions in this profession.

In a study by Brisman et al. that was performed with the aim of evaluating the wheezing, dry cough, and nasal congestion in hairdressers, the survey on respiratory symptoms, atopy, smoking, and job history was answered by three thousand nine hundred and fifty-seven female hairdressers and four thousand nine hundred and five reference women from general population. When compared with references, the ratios of all three symptoms in hairdressers were found to be high and hairdressing was correlated with an increased incidence of respiratory symptoms. The combined effect of hairdressing and smoking was found to be lower than expected and it was proposed that smoking has negative modifying effect.

In a study by Slater et al., the occupational respiratory symptoms in hairdressers were examined. A survey was done on a hundred hairdressers and employees of one hundred and six offices and stores   covering their respiratory symptoms, demographic data and smoking habits. Respiratory functions were measured before each shift. Asthma symptoms, diagnosis, and asthma attack prevalence of hairdressers in the previous twelve-month period were found to be high.  High symptom prevalence in hairdressers was associated with high smoking ratios and average pulmonary function values were found to be low.

According to the study  cough, phlegm, and chest tightness were  noted more in smokers compared to nonsmokers. Rhinitis was also more in smoking hairdressers.

“In conclusion, hairdressers were determined as an occupational group the majority of which was formed by women, in which respiratory complaints and rhinitis history were frequently observed in the subgroup in which cotinine was above 500 ng/mL and where both occupational and smoking status had an additive effect.”

Cutting off smoking could help in this profession.


  • Ümran Toru, Peri Meram Arbak, Kezban Özmen Süner, Özlem Yavuz, and Naciye Karataş, “Relationship between Respiratory Tract Complaints, Functional Status, and Smoking in Hairdressers, Auto Painters, and Carpenters,” The Scientific World Journal, vol. 2014, Article ID 802705, 7 pages, 2014. doi:10.1155/2014/802705
  • “The incidence of respiratory symptoms in female Swedish hairdressers,” The American Journal of Industrial Medicine, vol. 44, no. 6, pp. 673–678, 2003.
  • “Occupational respiratory symptoms in New Zealand hairdressers,” Occupational Medicine, vol. 50, no. 8, pp. 586–590, 2000.