Signs that Indicate Your Lungs Could be in Trouble
Your lungs play a key role in keeping every organ of your body functioning
properly. They are working every second as you breathe, so it’s crucial to keep
your lungs healthy.
As you breathe out, healthy lungs dispose of carbon dioxide. But many people
worldwide suffer from lung problems.
The association also reports that another 12 to 24 million people may have the
condition without realizing it.
Along with COPD, some other common lung diseases are asthma, bronchitis,
tuberculosis, emphysema and cystic fibrosis.
To keep your lungs healthy, you must be aware of the signs that indicate some
kind of lung problem. Addressing it early will help protect your lungs from
severe damage and reduce the risk of chronic lung disease as well as lung
1. Ongoing Cough
Coughing helps protect the airways from inhaled irritants and helps remove
phlegm (mucus) from the breathing passages.
Also, while coughing, you may have chest pain that extends up into your
shoulder or down your arm. If you are coughing more or develop a persistent
cough for no apparent reason, see your doctor.
2. Labored Breathing
If you experience labored breathing, even while doing your regular daily
chores, it’s another clear sign that something is wrong with your lungs.
If it’s not a medical problem requiring treatment, you can exercise daily to
build your strength and stamina. Also, practice deep breathing to ease
shortness of breath.
3. Increased Mucus
Coughing usually goes hand in hand with the production of mucus or phlegm.
Mucus helps keep germs, dirt, pollen and bacteria from getting stuck in the
But when you start producing more mucus that is not due to a cold or other
common illness, it is not a good sign.
Blood in the mucus can be a sign of lung cancer, chronic bronchitis or
emphysema. Talk to your doctor about your symptoms to find out the exact cause.
4. Persistent Wheezing
A wheezing sound is a sign that your airways are narrowing. Due to constricted
airways, air doesn’t flow out as fast as it should. This results in a wheezing
sound when you breathe.
No matter what, you should see your doctor to rule out the possibility of a
serious lung disease or severe lung damage.
5. Swelling in the Lower Body
As odd as it may seem, swelling, pain and tenderness in your legs or feet can
indicate some type of problem with your lungs.
To reduce swelling in your legs, feet and ankles, keep your feet or legs
elevated. If the swelling is getting worse day by day, see your doctor.
6. Morning Headaches
If you suddenly start waking up with headaches and/or dizziness, you need to
see your doctor.
This carbon dioxide buildup causes blood vessels in the brain to dilate, which
results in a throbbing headache.
Feeling fatigued or excessively tired even after getting proper sleep is
another sign that something is wrong with your body. Such symptoms can indicate
a lung problem.
On top of that, having low energy starts a vicious cycle. Fatigue keeps you
from exercising, and a lack of exercise affects your stamina.
8. Sleeping Issues
If you find it difficult to sleep on a bed due to troubled breathing or
sleeping in a chair is more comfortable, then it has something to do with your
So, just imagine how improper sleep night after night can affect your health.
If you wake regularly throughout the night with breathing difficulties or
coughing, talk to your doctor.
Tips to keep your lungs healthy:
Quit smoking. The harmful chemicals affect the health of your lungs and put you
at a high risk for lung disease or cancer. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.
It is also highly toxic and harmful for your lungs.
Avoid going to highly polluted and industrialized areas. If you need to go to
such places, wear a mask to prevent breathing in irritants. Get indoor plants
to improve the air quality of your home and office.
Minimize the use of harsh cleaning products and those with a strong fragrance.
Exercise daily to increase your lung capacity. Practice deep breathing daily to
prevent lung and heart problems.
Eat healthy and make sure to include detoxifying and antioxidant-rich foods in
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