Is shortness of breath that serious?

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Anonymous #1
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Called my GP to make an appointment about shortness of breath. The receptionist got really worried and was very apologetic that my GP is on holiday so I'll have to wait a week. She kept asking if I wouldn't be better going to A&E and that I definitely should if things deteriorate. It's weird, I don't know if I keep getting shortness of breath because I'm overweight but it was weird how worried she got for something that seemed so trivial to me. I mean, it has been going on for 4 months. :dontknow:
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Final Fantasy
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Yes, it's considered a medical emergency. Being able to breathe properly is quite important as it turns out...
Last edited by Final Fantasy; 1 month ago
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
Yes, it's considered a medical emergency. Being able to breathe properly is quite important as it turns out...
It's not all the time, it comes and goes. Last night for instance I got up to use the bathroom around 3am and couldn't breathe when I got back into bed and had to take like really big breaths and struggled. It also happens frequently (though not every time) I go up stairs. Which is why I thought it was related to my weight.
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Final Fantasy
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(Original post by Anonymous)
It's not all the time, it comes and goes. Last night for instance I got up to use the bathroom around 3am and couldn't breathe when I got back into bed and had to take like really big breaths and struggled. It also happens frequently (though not every time) I go up stairs. Which is why I thought it was related to my weight.
Being unable to breathe, regardless how frequent or not, is considered a medical emergency. You have no way of knowing whether it's due to your weight or not.
Last edited by Final Fantasy; 1 month ago
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
Being unable to breathe, regardless how frequent or not, is considered a medical emergency.
......oh.
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Final Fantasy
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(Original post by Anonymous)
......oh.
Dial 111 or 999, tell them you're having difficulties breathing. They will advise you on next steps. Best wishes.
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vettycroissant
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Perhaps, but it can also be related to your heart, for example. It is still considered an urgent issue.

I had shortness of breath recently, along with chest pain, which had been coming and going for weeks. When I told my nurse friend, he told me to go straight to A&E. I called 111 just to see if they said the same and they did. The doctors at A&E said it was the right thing to do. After that, I didn't feel so silly about going.

It's something that's been a change for you (i.e. came on 4 months ago) so definitely get it checked out ASAP.
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Moonlight rain
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It's pretty normal when you have anxiety
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Foxehh
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Yes. Breathing is important, something is clearly not right if your body is struggling to take in air.
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shooonthebeat
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(Original post by Moonlight rain)
It's pretty normal when you have anxiety
Was just about to say this! OP, do you suffer from anxiety? If yes then shortness of breath can happen sometimes. As far as I know, there's not lot that medication can do to resolve that. I'd recommend breathing exercises to help you stay calm. Meditation can help too.
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Anonymous #1
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Oh ok....this is not the response I expected. :lolwut:

I have an appointment for next week.
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vettycroissant
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Oh ok....this is not the response I expected. :lolwut:

I have an appointment for next week.
Hope it goes OK. There's LOADS of info out there about managing shortness of breath at the moment, because so many people have been experiencing it during and after getting Covid. I recommend https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coron...ronavirus.html and https://www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk...reathlessness/. The advice talks about Covid but can be applied to breathlessness generally.
Last edited by vettycroissant; 1 month ago
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Zarek
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Shortness of breath without known cause needs investigation. It’s likely fine to wait till next week but look at the NHS website for when you should call 999 or go to A&E
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nightingalegend
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i’m short of breath a lot because of what i suspect is anxiety, but i’m also always tired, dizzy and aching and i can’t stand up for too long. i don’t know if it’s me being unfit or a bigger problem though...

OP, i’d suggest you call 111 next time you feel short of breath. it’s better to rule out anything potentially serious.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by nightingalegend)
i’m short of breath a lot because of what i suspect is anxiety, but i’m also always tired, dizzy and aching and i can’t stand up for too long. i don’t know if it’s me being unfit or a bigger problem though...

OP, i’d suggest you call 111 next time you feel short of breath. it’s better to rule out anything potentially serious.
Do you get "anxiety" when you just get out of bed to go to the loo (like the example I mentioned) or is it more in reaction to something? Other than going upstairs there doesn't seem to be much pattern, it can just strike out of nowhere - is anxiety like that?
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Hazzz01
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pls get it checked.
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black tea
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It depends on what's causing it - some causes can be pretty serious. Feeling short of breath from going to the loo seems a bit excessive though, even for someone who is overweight. Definitely follow the advice you have been given and go to A&E if things get worse.
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nightingalegend
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Do you get "anxiety" when you just get out of bed to go to the loo (like the example I mentioned) or is it more in reaction to something? Other than going upstairs there doesn't seem to be much pattern, it can just strike out of nowhere - is anxiety like that?
anxiety for me is generally a mix of dread/anxiousness that lasts throughout the day, so i'll be vaguely shaky and short of breath and a lot of stomach pain (lol), and when a triggering situation arises it'll become much more intense. i think you can generally tell the difference between anxiety symptoms and other unrelated symptoms -- with anxiety, it tends to feel like there's a weight on your chest and a knot in the pit of your stomach that you can't always exactly place, but it's a clear mix of emotional and somewhat physical distress.

if you're dizzy going up the stairs or getting out of bed but you feel it's purely physical (that happens to me too) then it most likely is a physical issue. however, sometimes mental health problems make you neglect your health (i.e. not eating or drinking enough, staying in bed all day, etc.), which manifest physically. have you been struggling mentally lately? if so, it'd still be a good idea to dial 111 if shortness of breath arises again -- that way, you can rule out anything that's possibly wrong physically, and then you can perhaps see your GP about any mental health issues you're facing.

good luck and stay safe! :heart:
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Anonymous #1
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My doctor seemed pretty worried and did some exploratory blood tests as well as ordering a chest xray. Do I need to take my bra off for a chest xray?
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ReadingMum
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(Original post by Anonymous)
My doctor seemed pretty worried and did some exploratory blood tests as well as ordering a chest xray. Do I need to take my bra off for a chest xray?
probably - especially if it is underwired
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