9 COPD Warning Signs You Probably Confusing With Tiredness and a Headache
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a lung condition that affects millions of people worldwide. This lung condition occurs when the passages and air sacs of the lungs become thickened and damaged, preventing the lungs from getting enough oxygen. Often, people are not diagnosed with COPD until they are having extreme difficulty breathing, but there are many warning signs before the condition gets to such a severe stage. If you have any of the follow symptoms, you may have COPD.
Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath that occurs during regular daily activities is one of the major signs of early COPD. In addition to running out of breath while climbing stairs or doing other mildly strenuous tasks, you may notice this happening even when you are not moving at all. At early stages, this shortness of breath might only happen every now and then, but it is still one of the warning signs.
As COPD progresses, coughing gets worse and worse. If you have a cough that will not go away for several weeks, it may be due to your lung’s inability to function properly. The persistent coughing associated with COPD will typically not be accompanied by the normal symptoms of a cold or flu.
The many different symptoms of COPD all combine to affect sleep quality. Difficulty breathing and random coughing can both make a person wake up while he or she is trying to sleep. Even if you do not completely wake up, COPD can affect the quality of sleep enough to keep you from getting a good night’s rest. This warning sign of COPD may also be due to the other conditions that often coincide with the disease.
The lungs are not the only organ that is affected by COPD. When there is not enough oxygen in the bloodstream, the heart has trouble working hard enough to circulate oxygen throughout the bodies. This heart strain can cause fluid to build up as the less important functions of the body get less blood and oxygen. The fluid tends to accumulate in the body’s lower half, so ankles, legs, and feet all become swollen.
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There is usually some mucus in the lungs that is supposed to keep passageways moist. However, extreme mucus production is a warning sign that has been linked to an immediate decline in lung functioning by several studies. Changes in texture, color, or amount of mucus may all be a sign of COPD, especially if the mucus appears to contain blood.