Straight, No Chaser: Lung Health – Know The Signs of Danger

I would suggest you should be in complete awe of your lungs. Did you know you take over 20,000 breaths a day? Your lungs brings air into your body and eliminates waste (carbon dioxide) when you exhale. The lungs transfer oxygen into the bloodstream and launches it throughout body’s cells as life-sustaining fuel. This Straight, No Chaser skips ahead in the process of lung function to discuss the relevance of everyday symptoms you experience as signals of danger.

If you have any of these warning signs or symptoms, discuss them with your physician as soon as possible.

chronic cough

Chronic Cough – In this definition, chronic means the cough has been present for at least a month.  This is an important early symptom and should not be ignored – smokers, that means you.

shortness-of-breath

Shortness of Breath – To be clear: you expect to be short of breath after you exercise or otherwise exert yourself. The shortness of breath that should be particularly concerning doesn’t go away after exercising or occurs after little or no exertion. The feeling that it is hard to breathe in or out is also a warning sign and is also indicative of respiratory illness.

mucus asthma

Chronic Mucus Production – Mucus (aka sputum or phlegm) is produced by the airways as a defense response to infections or irritants.  Ongoing production for more than a month could indicate lung disease.

wheezing

Wheezing – Wheezing is often described as noisy or musical breathing and is a sign that something blocking your lungs’ airways or making them too narrow, such as a physical obstruction, inflammation or increased mucus production.

coughing-up-blood

Coughing up Blood – If you are coughing up blood, the blood may be coming from your lungs or higher up in your respiratory tract. It is a sign of a health problem.

chest-pain chronic

Chronic Chest Pain – Chest pain lasting more than a month should be taken as a warning sign. Lung involvement is more likely if it is associated with worsening while breathing or coughing.

Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.

Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.

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