We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Are the Symptoms of Ammonia Poisoning?

Deanna Baranyi
By
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Although ammonia is a chemical that occurs naturally in the environment and within our own bodies, it is possible to experience ammonia poisoning, particularly if a person is exposed to concentrated amounts of ammonia. For example, ammonia is found in products such as fertilizers, smelling salts, cleaning products, and in the manufacture of dyes, plastics, and fabrics. Symptoms of ammonia poisoning can be wide ranging and, if left untreated, can result in death. The chest and lungs are primarily affected, as are the throat, mouth, ears, and eyes. In some cases, the poisoned individual may have changes in her pulse, experience restlessness, or may fall unconscious, and some people experience abdominal pain, vomiting, and chemical burns as well.

If inhaled or ingested, ammonia will affect the chest and lungs. A person may experience burning and severe tightness in the chest, which can lead to wheezing and problems breathing. Coughing may occur when the concentrations of ammonia are lower when it is inhaled or ingested. This form of poisoning causes severe damage to the lungs because it breaks down lung tissue, prevents the formation of protective mucus, and destroys the cilia that line the lungs.

The throat, mouth, nose, ears, and eyes can be affected by ammonia poisoning as well. Often, the individual will experience burning and severe tearing in the eyes. If left untreated, the lens and cornea can be damaged, causing blindness. In addition, the person may experience burning and swelling in the mouth, throat, and lips. The main cause of the burning is a chemical burn caused by the ammonia.

A hidden symptom of ammonia poisoning includes problems with the heart. Many people experience an increase or decrease in their pulse rates. This sudden raise or drop is often severe and can lead to shock in some cases.

One of the more visible symptoms of ammonia poisoning is seen through the skin. If a person's skin comes in contact with ammonia, they may experience a chemical burn. The burn may appear superficial at first, but since ammonia breaks down tissue, it can actually be a deep tissue burn.

Medical care is essential to treat ammonia poisoning. There is no specific form of treatment for the poisoning, but the symptoms may be relieved with quick and efficient care. If the ammonia is not washed away from the affected area immediately, it may prove life threatening for that individual.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Deanna Baranyi
By Deanna Baranyi , Former Writer
Deanna Baranyi, a freelance writer and editor with a passion for the written word, brings a diverse skill set to her work. With degrees in relevant fields and a keen ability to understand and connect with target audiences, she crafts compelling copy, articles, and content that inform and engage readers.

Discussion Comments

By anon1002768 — On Feb 11, 2020

Parasitic infections can cause this.

By candyquilt — On Jul 05, 2011

Some states have information and instructions on what to do if you come into contact with ammonia. I picked up a handout about it at a government building. I think the scariest thing about ammonia is if it were to be used as part of a terrorist attack. I think there have been such incidents before.

The handout says to immediately leave the are where ammonia is found to prevent further exposure. We are supposed to remove all clothing that has ammonia on it, because it can actually poison other people around us. Kids are especially vulnerable. And lastly, we are supposed to wash all areas with soapy water, wash our eyes with water if they were exposed and wait for more instructions from the authorities.

By discographer — On Jul 04, 2011

Most of our cleaning products have ammonia but I don't think that the ammonia in them are strong enough to cause ammonia poisoning. It certainly won't if you use a small amount, use gloves, open windows and dilute it with water while cleaning.

I think that the ammonia that causes poisoning is mostly found in industrial facilities or farms. I know that facilities that make fertilizer, dyes for fabric and other chemicals use ammonia the most. The workers who have to deal with these chemicals have the highest risk of ammonia poisoning.

Deanna Baranyi

Deanna Baranyi

Former Writer

Deanna Baranyi, a freelance writer and editor with a passion for the written word, brings a diverse skill set to her...
Learn more
The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.