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5 Lung Disorders That Affect Your Breathing

5 Lung Disorders That Affect Your Breathing

People typically focus strictly on the lungs when they think of lung disorders. But these diseases can affect numerous parts of the respiratory system, including:

Some lung disorders affect one of these areas, while others involve a combination.

Lung disorders can also have numerous causes and treatments. As a result, it’s important to seek expert care if you experience breathing problems.

Dr. Nehal Mehta and Dr. Prashant Patel provide medical services for acute, critical, and chronic lung disorders at Respacare in Bridgewater, New Jersey. 

Here are five common pulmonary problems that affect your breathing.

1. Asthma

One of the most common lung disorders in the United States is asthma — a condition that causes inflammation and swelling in the airways.

Studies show that over 27 million Americans live with this disorder, which causes shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing, and tightness or pain in the chest.

Fortunately, working with an expert can help manage symptoms and even prevent attacks from occurring.

2. Pneumonia 

Pneumonia is another serious lung disorder that can affect one or both lungs.

This infection develops from microorganisms, ranging from viruses and bacteria to fungi. It causes delicate air sacs in the lungs to fill with pus or fluid, interfering with the ability to breathe.

Pneumonia can range from mild to life-threatening. It also poses severe risks to infants and children, those 65 and older, and people with other health issues — especially other lung disorders.

Treating pneumonia varies based on the cause and severity. 

3. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Several conditions fall under the COPD umbrella, including emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

If you have COPD, you have a progressive lung disease that interferes with your lung function, leaving you feeling breathless.

The leading causes of COPD lung disorders are environmental, specifically smoking. However, up to 30% of cases occur in those who never smoked.

Since COPD lung disorders worsen with time, early intervention plays a key role in slowing their progression and managing symptoms.

4. COVID-19

You may have a hard time breathing when you’re sick with COVID-19, but it might not stop there. This illness can also impact your lungs afterward — even if you had a mild infection.

COVID-19 can cause a variety of lung complications, such as:

All of these issues can interfere with your ability to breathe and cause lasting lung damage.

If you continue struggling with COVID symptoms or breathing for weeks or months after infection, you could benefit from post-COVID respiratory treatment.

5. Sleep apnea

Finally, you may associate sleep apnea with just that — sleep. But this serious condition is also a respiratory disorder.

Sleep apnea makes you stop breathing repeatedly during sleep. This can occur because of muscles in your throat relaxing and blocking the airway, signaling problems in the systems regulating breathing, or both.

No matter what’s causing your sleep disorder, it’s crucial to seek treatment. 

When you don’t breathe properly, your body doesn’t get the oxygen it needs to thrive. This can put your health and overall life at risk.

The good news is that there are numerous solutions available for sleep apnea. Once your Respacare provider completes your assessment, we can offer personalized recommendations to address your symptoms as quickly as possible.

Have you noticed breathing changes? The sooner you schedule a visit, the quicker you can breathe easier again. Contact Respacare to schedule a consultation with one of our experts in Bridgewater, New Jersey, today.

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