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Groups and causes of the most common occupational diseases

Last updated: 09.09.2021
  • Physical overload, for example, is caused by hard physical work.
  • Chemicals can cause damage to the skin, nails and upper and lower respiratory tract.
  • Lung diseases can be caused, for example, by mineral dust.


  •  Physical overload diseases Physical overload is often the cause of occupational diseases. For example, computer work causes tension in the hands, neck and shoulder girdle. Important physical factors in the working environment also include strenuous physical work, lifting weights and working in cold and humid environments. Lung diseases Lung diseases can be caused by a number of working environment hazards, such as mineral dust, aerosols and gases from toxic substances, and strenuous physical work with poor weather conditions.
  • Hearing impairments Noise-induced hearing loss still occurs today, although noise levels can already be controlled quite effectively with a variety of collective and personal protective equipment. Noise-induced hearing loss is also affected by age, exposure to neurotoxic chemicals, individual characteristics and non-occupational noise sources.
  • Occupational skin diseases If a skin disease is proven to be caused by occupational contact with an allergen or toxic substance, an occupational disease can be diagnosed. This may be due to working in rubber shoes in humid and warm conditions, prolonged pressure from the working position or tool, etc.
  • Occupational diseases caused by chemical hazards in the working environment Chemicals can cause damage to the skin, nails and upper and lower respiratory tract. Poisonings are less common. Skin lesions and allergic occupational diseases are more common. Skin damage can be caused by acid and alkaline solutions and by oil and coal products, arsenic compounds or gasoline. Calcium hypochlorite causes nail damage.