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Why do my symptoms seem so bad at night?

Coughing wheezing gulping for air not to mention the rib pain! I’m at 61 percent lung function my doctor just moved to another state and so far my PCP offers no explanation or empathy for my symptoms….have a blessed and breathful day. Thank you.


Community Answers
  • kimmer1968 author
    2 months ago

    The coughing and wheezing and rib pain…the heartburn and chest pain

  • kimmer1968 author
    2 months ago

    I live with four smokers who smoke in the home I like be in. ..I believe that is the trigger.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 months ago

    Hi again, kimmer1958 and thanks for your response and explanation as to how you are managing with the four smokers in your home. Thanks, too, for the kind words about our community and the hope it provides to you. We’re glad to have you here! Leon (site moderator)

  • kimmer1968 author
    2 months ago

    I pray alot walk when I get to stressed…. more times than not I am alone in one room while they smoke in the next room…..it really has an effect on the breathing sometimes…but I am blessed ….I am smoke free
    and have hope again, and because of you, COPD.NET, I AM NO LONGER ALONE MY

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 months ago

    Hi kimmer1968 and thanks for your post. That must be quite a challenge for you – living with four smokers in your home. However do you manage in those conditions? Leon (site moderator)

  • Barbara Moore moderator
    2 months ago

    Do you track your symptoms on a daily basis and look at your environment to see what could be causing this increase in symptoms? I do and I find that there are different reasons and once I understand what is happening I realize that it won’t last forever. Barbara Moore (Site moderator)

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    2 months ago

    Hi again, kimmer1968, and thanks for your update. There is no question the symptoms you describe (coughing, wheezing, rib pain – with heartburn and chest pain), are difficult to deal with. This can be magnified at night just by virtue of being alone while the whole world is asleep.
    If these symptoms mentioned persist, or worsen even, you may want to check in with your doctor. You’ll want to know if your condition(s) warrant more medical attention. There is an increased concern when you mention ‘chest pain’.
    Please keep us posted as to your progress.
    All the best, Leon (site moderator)

  • nurse62619
    3 months ago

    Hi Kimmer, I find nights can be bad too. My personal feeling is that after the normal progression of the day my fatigue intensifies. That oxygen starvation feeling can become very anxiety ridden for me. The dreaded wheezing adds to the general discomfort. Things I do: definitely either an ordered or PRN treatment before bed, including pain, anxiety, or sleep aid, stick to bedtime routine to eliminate as much need as possible to have to leave my bed, avoid stimulants like caffeine after 5, limit “screen time” past 9 or 10 (that is a tough one for me!) and try to position myself for comfort (lying on the side where you are having the least noisy breathing while positioning for body comfort). Definitely should find a doctor who is more willing to hear you. If they are not listening they are NOT helping you! Positive energy coming your way!

  • kimmer1968 author
    2 months ago

    Thank you…I have positive news I tested positive for the flu typeA and SURVIVED!!!!
    I DO FEAR IM EXCERBATING THO….MY LUNGS SEEM FULL..THANK GOD LUNG APPT FRIDAY. MY PCP HAS NO EMPATHY BECAUSE I SMOKED…..I DO HAVE THREE MONTHS CIGARETTE FREE…..HE STILL CALOS ME A SMOKER AND ROLLS HIS EYES..MMM Medicaid limits my PCP choices so I feel stuck….but I do have a physician in heaven, JESUS!
    HAVE A BREATHFUL DAY!!!!
    Sending God’s Blessings, Kimmer

  • kimmer1968 author
    2 months ago

    Thank you for always answering my texts it feels really good to know if somebody else going through the same things. Sometimes I feel very alone especially at night when everyone else is sleeping and I can’t lay down because my lungs fill up. Also my family is uneducated about my disease and a belief because I’m not wheezing or crying in pain that I’m healed!
    I know it’s very important for me to stay active so that my lungs work better but they seem to believe that this isn’t affecting my whole life. The pain in my ribs is crippling! But I do praise my God because I am alive! Do have a breathful day and God bless you

  • nurse62619
    2 months ago

    Sorry you got hit with the flu! With that diagnosis it is good you are being seen by someone who specializes in respiratory issues. If you feel an exacerbation is threatening to rear up then care and precaution is vital until you are feeling more yourself. Do you have a plan in case your condition declines? Is someone checking on you? Are you well enough to fix meals etc? When I feel threatened by an exacerbation those closest to me know signs that need attention immediately and I think often times if is their help that heads off more serious situations. The smoking stigma (ugh)…I understand the special brand of self loathing that comes with being a “smoker” Some believe we bought and paid for our condition, it is sad when it is a health care professional that is adding to the amount of judgement we inflict upon ourselves as it relates to our illness…you are not alone. Do believe that not all care providers are this callous, and while limited access to PCP can be problematic don’t give up on finding the right one…the one who updates your chart to “former smoker” (as mine has done just a little over a month post acute exacerbation), encourages ongoing healthy behaviors, and helps you live the best life you can! Congratulations on quitting and more positive energy your way that you are feeling better soon!

  • John Bottrell, RRT moderator
    2 months ago

    Thanks for the update. Glad to hear you have a lung appointment on Friday. And very happy to hear you’ve gone three months without smoking. That is definitely something you should feel very proud of. It does sound like you are limited in your doctor choices. If you continue to have problems with this doctor, and your symptoms aren’t improving, have you considered going to a clinic or to an ER? John. Site Moderator.

  • Leon Lebowitz, BA, RRT moderator
    3 months ago

    Hi Kimmer and thanks for the excellent question.
    Sadly, I do not have a definitive answer – although I have a few theories!
    It is possible medication dosing (sometimes four times a day, puts medication at low levels in the middle of the night.
    Sometimes – it’s those nighttime ‘demons’ that some of us have. In the quiet and solitude of the night, some of us get more anxious and worrisome. That can have an adverse effect on symptoms.

    I’m curious as to what others may come up with for an explanation, too.
    You never mentioned which symptoms seem to worsen at night. Are you able to share that with the community?

    Wishing you well,
    Leon (site moderator)

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