Over time, inhaling drywall dust may lead to different conditions, such as breathing difficulties, coughing and persistent airway irritation. Workers suffering from respiratory and sinus conditions and those who smoke may have a higher risk due to inhaling the dust.
Drywall dust contains different ingredients, such as silica, talc, mica, gypsum and calcite. Some of these elements have been linked to the irritation of the eyes, nose and the throat. Silica dust in the body may lead to a condition called silicosis, as stated by the American Lung Association. Workers are usually advised to wear protective gear during sanding. The usage of vacuum sanding systems is encouraged to reduce the exposure to the dust.