Phlegm is the congealing of mucus in the lungs. Mucus congealed in the lungs can range from a light yellow to dark green color and sometimes can be laced with blood. Phlegm is not always indicative of a problem, infection or disease in fact it is a normal defense mechanism of the body. Phlegm traps bacteria dust and other infectious particles that are swept by the cilia in the lungs, traps them and brings them to the surface to be removed from the body. Phlegm that is lightly colored is usually considered as a body defense mechanism while phlegm that has a dark green color or is laced with blood are usually indicative of a more serious problem such as respiratory problems. Phlegm is worsened if you are a smoker or work in industries with a lot of exhaust or dust exposure.
§ protective masks, nasal sprays, expectorants
- For individuals who work in industries with excessive exposures to exhaust, dust or other products which may be debilitating to lung functions then you will need to wear protective masks. Protective masks tailored to your industry should be purchased and worn at all times. This will reduce the amount of dust which enters the lungs and hence reducing the production of phlegm.
- Smokers are at great risk for phlegm build up. Stop smoking to get reduce your production of phlegm and also to reduce your risk of cancer and other respiratory illnesses.
- Nasal sprays help to constrict the blood vessels in the nose which decreases mucus production at this point. In addition to being produced in the lungs phlegm can be enhanced by mucus production of the dilated blood vessels in the nose during colds or flu. Nasal spray dries up mucus and reduces phlegm.
- Expectorants break up the mucus in the phlegm reducing it and allowing it to be removed more easily from the body.
- The power of water is undeniable. Drinking water helps to loosen phlegm allowing it to be removed more easily from the body.
- Use a pot of hot water to steam your face for at least 10 minutes when you feel congested. This breaks up phlegm for easy removal and provides tremendous relief if you are stuffy.
TIPS AND WARNINGS
§ If your phlegm is continuously dark green, laced with blood and presents with pain in the chest then it means there may be a serious problem. Serious bacterial infections such as tuberculosis or serious viral infections such as viral bronchitis may cause these symptoms. If you experience these or any other symptoms with regards to phlegm that you may think are abnormal, consult your physician.
Jenny Richards is a free lancer writer and content builder of http://www.whoopingcoughsymptoms.net