I am a 28 year old male, 5'10" 200 lbs. and I have had breathing problems for almost 7 years now. My wife is pregnant with our first child, a girl! but I have no health insurance and make $200 a month too much to qualify for gov' assistance so my medical options are very limited. My past includes 9 years of daily chronic marijuana use (clean for over 30 days now and will never return) my usage for the last 4 years has been light, roughly 3-4 hits a day. I also have had a very poor diet most of my life. High in caffeine, sugars, simple carbs etc. (I have began a very strict diet based on my studies of possible Candida overgrowth). I have also had a small esophagus all my life, this results in food getting stuck and not passing into my stomach for up to several hours. My breathing problems began years ago as a simple desire to yawn. I would catch myself constantly keeping my mouth open trying to invoke a yawn. I did this because I felt that I couldn't get the satisfaction of a full deep breath. This would had happen periodically throughout the day but did not affect the quality of my life. 3 years ago, after a long day, I fainted and had a small seizure. The ambulance came and all my vitals checked out fine so I opted to stay home. For the past two years my breathing problems have become a lot worse and have a definite affect on my quality of life. Everyday, for most of the day, I feel like I can't catch a deep and fulfilling breathe. I have noticed it gets worse when I eat. I have felt very close to fainting several times and have the ambulance visit a couple times as well. Still, all my vitals check out so I have never been to the emergency room. I decided to go see a doctor about my problems and she was not able to pin point what is wrong with me. I had several blood tests done, my thyroid check came back great, my blood pressure is good, cholesterol is good, my blood is carrying 98% oxygen, chest x-ray came back clean, lungs sound perfect. So the doc chalked it up to anxiety. I do not believe it is anxiety as I do not feel stressed. The only time I get anxious is when I can't breath. So I attempt to calm down and it doesn't resolve the problem. My breathing problem is a very real problem that feels very physical. Also, I feel like when I am full i have trapped air in my stomach so I 'swallow' more air to force myself to burp. This relieves the trapped air a little bit but it can last for hours. It does not relieve my breathing problem. Furthermore, at night I cannot sleep. When I lay down I cannot breath so I spend most of my night sitting up trying to catch a deep breath. Eventually I do fall asleep but wake up a lot of the time feeling like I need oxygen. I have even been woken up by the need to breathe and my heart was pounding very fast. I am very scared for my health and I need help. Please, if anyone who can relate to what I am going through can share some information with me on how to improve my breathing and quality of life I would forever be grateful. I just want to be able to live a normal life again and enjoy moments with my wife and soon to be child. My breathing problems tend to make me irritable and I tend to need my own space to try and cope with my lack of oxygen. Can someone please help me?
Your symptoms could be due to Asthma. Cough, chest tightness and breathlessness the three symptoms are the triad of symptoms for Asthma. It is a disease affecting the lungs causing narrowing of the airways, usually due to an allergic reaction to triggering factors. Therapy is with bronchodilators which cause the airways to dilate. Lung function tests could help in evaluation of asthma. Please discuss this with your doctor am sure he will provide further assistance.
The doc said my lungs sound perfect. No wheezing or abnormal sounds. I seem to have the hardest time breathing at night and specially if I eat after 9:30... could it be GERD? I get some acid reflux but not a lot.
Lung function tests could help rule out Asthma. Your symptoms could be due to GERD. You could try lifestyle measures to combat GERD. Take frequent small meals. Eat dinner about two hours before sleeping. Elevate the head end of the bed. Keep a food diary and note down what aggravates your symptoms and avoid them. Ensure to maintain optimum weight by regular exercise. Avoid non steroidal anti inflammatory medications NSAID's, quit smoking, eliminate alcohol and reduce stress levels. These measures need to be practiced long term for results.
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