5 signs there’s something wrong with your lungs
Do you have a constant need of a nap to be able to do daily tasks? Does a single flight of stairs make you feel like you climbed the mountain? Your cells need oxygen to produce the energy that keeps your heart pumping. When your lungs aren’t providing enough oxygen to your body, you start to fall behind.
You need time to catch your breath
It may seem that getting older automatically means getting short in breath, but that’s not always like that. If your usually normal breathing suddenly became harder, it’s a sign that maybe you should pay your doctor a visit and have your lungs checked. Sometimes shortness of breath is from difficulty emptying out the lungs enough and having too much air trapped inside your chest. Even when getting air out isn’t an issue, ailing lungs can leave you gasping just by not doing their main job: delivering adequate oxygen into your blood.
Daze and confusion
Your brain uses up to 15-20% of your body’s oxygen supply. Your brain cells need oxygen to keep you thinking; if your O2 level is low because your lungs aren’t delivering the goods, your thoughts can become a mess. Very low oxygen levels and very high carbon dioxide levels can cause confusion or make a person sleepy.
You’re coughing all the time
A cough that is consistent — especially if it comes with mucus, blood, or a fever, is cause for very big concern. It’s especially worrisome if you smoke like a chimney, since it’s a classic sign of emphysema or chronic bronchitis. If your cough sticks around for more than 3 weeks, especially if it becomes harder and harder for you to breathe with time, you should consult with your doctor immediately.
Your skin is gray
When it comes to skin, pink is preferable. Red blood cells, the ones carrying oxygen to your tissues, give you a healthy glow. Bluish-grey lips, fingers, and toes are an indication that those parts of your body aren’t getting the oxygen they need. It’s most common for skin discoloration to pop up in late-stage lung disease. It tends to happen more when people exert themselves, but it can happen at rest as well.