Do you get a tightness or heaviness in your chest sometimes? There are a bunch of reasons you might feel this way. You may have a cold, or it could be something more serious. Talk to your doctor to find out what's going on. He'll want to know if you have other symptoms that can help pinpoint your condition.
- Pressure or squeezing in the center of your chest
- Pain in your arms, back, neck, jaw, or stomach
- Feeling short of breath
- Sweating, nausea, light-headedness
Learn more about the symptoms of a heart attack.
You might get:
- Short of breath, especially when lying down
- Tired and weak
- Coughing spells, especially at night
- Swollen legs and ankles
- Weight gain
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these signs. Read more about heart failure symptoms.
It's a lung infection that you get from a bacteria, virus, or fungus. Sometimes it starts out as the flu. You may feel short of breath or get other symptoms like:
You're probably all too familiar with the sneezing, coughing, and stuffy nose that go along with a cold. But it can make your lungs congested, too. Your airways get inflamed and make extra mucus. You might start coughing some of it up.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
When you have COPD, the airways in your lungs get inflamed and thicken, which means less oxygen comes in and less carbon dioxide goes out. Over time, the shortness of breath gets worse.
The best thing you can do for your lungs is to quit smoking. Learn more about the symptoms and causes of COPD.
Most of the time it's caused by smoking. Your symptoms may include:
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Coughing, sometimes with blood
- Lung infections like bronchitis and pneumonia
- Weight loss
Get more details about lung cancer symptoms.
If you have asthma, your airways overreact to certain common triggers, including pollen, pet dander, cockroaches, smoke, air pollutants, or chemicals in your workplace. The disease tends to run in families.
With asthma, you may notice a wheezing sound when you breathe. Sometimes you only have it after you exercise or when you have a cold. Your chest may also feel tight. And you might have a cough at night or get short of breath.
A lot of medicines can help, including inhalers that you breathe in to give you quick relief, and others that you take daily to reduce inflammation in your lungs. Read more about asthma symptoms, causes, and triggers.
Anything you're allergic to can make it harder to breathe, and result in a congested chest, watery eyes, and wheezing. Pollen, dust, and pet dander (tiny flecks of skin shed by animals) are some common culprits.