Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder, commonly known as COPD, is a lung disease that affects the breathing of the patient. It is a combination of two lung disorders, emphysema and chronic obstructive bronchitis. Smoking is a major cause of this disease and so is air pollution. Here are a few symptoms that tell you that you might have COPD.
1. You are experiencing breathing problems
Just because you are old or obese or unfit does not mean that you will experience breathing issues. Yes, these are common in people who belong to the above categories, but that does not mean that you shouldn’t consult a doctor about it. Shortening of breath is a major symptom of COPD. If you are experiencing such symptoms, keep in mind that you should not decrease your activity as it will only deteriorate your condition and consult a doctor immediately.
2. You are suffering from chronic cough
If you are experiencing frequent coughs, it is a sign of COPD. This happens because this disorder causes inflammation in the bronchial tubes and the tiny sacs that line the lung, which makes them less elastic. Then, the walls of the airways thicken and produce more mucus, resulting in clogging and thus cough.
3. You cannot sleep well
If you are having trouble falling asleep or wake up many times in the middle of the night, it is something that you need to take seriously. This happens because when you sleep, you do not breathe properly and so your body does not get the required oxygen. Instead, your head is filled with excess carbon dioxide. This causes the blood vessels to dilate, resulting in morning headaches and disturbed sleep.
4. Your nails and lips turn blue
Because enough oxygen does not flow through your blood, your fingernails and your lips start to turn blue. Sometimes this color might also be grayish. In some patients, the effects can be seen on the entire skin.
5. Your ankles begin to swell
The ankles and feet become swollen when there is fluid build-up in the body. This happens when the circulatory system does not get enough oxygen to function properly.
Do not take breathing issues lightly, as lack of oxygen can cause many severe problems in the body. When there isn’t enough oxygen, the heart cannot pump blood throughout the body, thereby hampering the normal functions of body parts. It can affect vital organs like the liver, the kidney and even the brain. Hence, if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, visit a doctor immediately… your body is asking you to.