Respiratory system

Itchy lungs: 7 Causes, Symptoms, and 6 Treatments

Respiratory diseases are among the common causes of death around the world. This condition affects plenty of people, and if left untreated it can be a threat to the health and life of a person. One such respiratory disease is Itchy Lungs.

Itchy lungs is a rare medical condition but equally dangerous like any other respiratory disease.

Itchy Lungs is often a symptom of the underlying respiratory disease. Also, the condition could also be an indication of a disease much worse than a respiratory condition.

What is an Itchy Lung? An itchy lung is a condition where patients report that their lungs feel itchy whenever they breathe. A majority of people with this condition report that the condition gives them an itchy inside chest feeling.

While others report that, they feel an itchy sensation on the skin. However, the itch is not on the skin but rather on the lungs. People with an itchy lungs condition often have difficulty breathing.

Difficult breathing could range from a slight nuisance to a major life threating condition. A progression on the condition also causes difficulty to go about day-to-day activities.

Also, Itchy Lungs is sometimes the first sign of pneumonia or asthma. Irritation is the major cause of a tickle in lungs sensation. The irritation comes from coughing too much because of the following causes:

Causes of Itchy Lungs:

itchy lungs
Itchy lungs
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Allergic reaction:

Itchy lungs result from an allergic reaction to some of the items in our environment. Some of these items include pollen, mould, dust, mites, animal dander, and cockroaches.

One of the most efficient ways to prevent yourself from acquiring an allergic reaction is ensuring you switch positions of where you sleep for some nights.

Switching your sleeping positions will help you determine whether where you sleep is what is giving you a tickle in lungs. If you think your sleeping position is the cause, you can try to get rid of the dust by cleaning the floor and sheets thoroughly.

You can also open the windows to allow the circulation of fresh air inside your sleeping area. Apart from allergies that come from dust and other environmental elements, food allergies can equally result in itchy lungs.

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Ensure you keep away from food you are allergic to; it helps avoid an irritated throat. The same applies to artificial food additives.

Infections, Diseases, and cures:

Any infection or disease that affects the throat, respiratory system or the lungs is a potential cause for a tickle in lungs. A majority of infections or conditions that affect the respiratory system as a whole arises from a case of common cold.

Other times these diseases are a symptom of some deadly respiratory disorders like asthma or pneumonia.

Medication provides a healing solution to some of the diseases in our bodies. However, some of the medication we take can cause a tickle in lungs. Aspirin is a type of medicine that can cause itchy lungs. The same case applies to anti-inflammatory drugs.

External sources:

For people with sensitive throats, the major cause of a tickle in lungs is cold or dry air. The cold or dry air irritates the lungs and eventually causes the respiratory system to heat up.

The heating up process of the respiratory system is what causes itchy lungs. Also, over exhaustion increases the breathing capacity of the lungs and as a result leads to Itchy lungs.

On the other hand, combining cold air and over exhaustion doubles the effects and results in a severe case of itchy lungs.

Other external sources like strong perfume, harmful chemical fumes in the air among others also irritate the lungs and throat. Like mentioned earlier, an irritated throat and lung result in Itchy Lungs.

People who handle or work in a factory that manufactures chemicals have a high risk of having itchy lungs. This is because of the lengthy contact they have with chemicals or the fumes they produce.

Physiological sources:

Stress plays a crucial role in the governing of our immune system. A stressed person has a higher likelihood of getting sick. This is because their immune system is vulnerable to diseases due to its reduced ability to cope with infections and diseases.

Addressing the reasons for stress increases the chances your body can fight the itchy lungs condition.

Menstrual Cycle:

A change in the level of hormones can result in Itchy lungs. An increase or a decrease of hormonal levels in the body makes it prone to other changes. Few of these changes include an increase in stress levels, a change in the immune system among others.

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These diverse changes make the body vulnerable to infections and diseases. It can also result in the irritation of your lungs, and this causes itchy lungs.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease:

This disease causes the backflow of stomach acids into the throat. The acids produce a tickle sensation in the throat, and it can result in a tickle in lungs condition.

Strenuous Physical activities:

Physical activities that are strenuous. For instance, too much exercising results to over exhaustion and in turn causes itchy lungs.

Symptoms of Itchy Lungs:

Despite itchy lungs being a symptom of some other disease, and they include

  • An intense itchy sensation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain and tightness in the chest
  • Difficulty breathing. This is a result of wheezing and a whistling chest sound while exhaling.
  • The coughing and wheezing bouts can become worse if the respiratory system is attacked by an infection like a common cold or flu.
  • The whistle sound during exhaling is a common symptom that children with itchy lungs experience.

Treatment of Itchy Lungs:

The treatment options for itchy lungs depend on the contributing factor of the disease. It also depends on the symptoms a patient acquires due to the disease, the age of the patient and the triggers of the symptoms. However, here are some common treatment options available for people with itchy lungs.


Itchy lungs condition is often an indication of an underlying respiratory condition. Therefore, once you observe any of the above symptoms, it essential to visit your physician for a proper diagnosis. The diagnosis will help to determine the respiratory condition causing the tickle in lungs.

The diagnosis will also enable the doctor to prescribe the right medication for the itchy lungs condition. For instance, if the cause of the itchy lungs condition is because of a respiratory disease like asthma, then long-term medicines to help control the condition will be given to you.

Some of the medications for asthma include inhaled corticosteroids, a combination of inhalers, beta agonists, and leukotriene modifiers. If the itchy lungs condition is a result of allergies, then allergy medication and shots are given to help control the disease.

Avoid Triggers:

To help avoid the itchy lungs condition from developing, it is necessary to know what triggers the disease. For instance, if dust, cockroaches, mites among other environmental sources are what triggers the condition, then dusting your house and the sleeping area will help stop the condition from occurring.

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You can also decrease the pet danger, cover your face and nose while in cold regions, maintain a proper humidity while indoors, and use an air conditioner.

However, if your trigger is stress, then ensure you maintain you reduce your stress levels by conversing with a close friend or visiting a counsellor.

Have a healthy weight:

People with an unhealthy weight often have issues when it comes to over-exhaustion. Like mentioned earlier, over-exhaustion is one of the causes of itchy lungs. People with an unhealthy weight often become exhausted even while doing the smallest tasks.

Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for people suffering from itchy lungs. Some of the ways of maintaining a healthy weight include regular exercise, taking plenty of water, and eating a balanced and healthy diet.

Manage GERD:

Managing the gastroesophageal reflux disease is also another way of ensuring that you avoid having itchy lungs. You can manage this condition by eating fruits, vegetables, foods without plenty of spices and acidity.

Keep Body warm:

Ensuring you keep the body warm is also another way of ensuring that you do not acquire a tickle in lungs. This method especially applies to people with a sensitive respiratory system. It also helps them deal with the condition in case they have itchy lungs.

Treating infections:

Treating infections like common cold or the flu early before they escalate helps prevent and treat the itchy lungs condition.

Itchy lungs condition is not only a condition but also a symptom of other respiratory conditions. Ensure you visit your doctor if you develop the condition for a conclusive diagnosis of your condition. As they say, knowledge is power.

The information you receive will help you know how to handle the condition and prevent the condition from escalating to dangerous levels.

The doctor will also advise you accordingly on the various steps you can take if the condition turns out to be a respiratory disease. Therefore, visiting a doctor is the first step in ensuring you treat itchy lungs adequately.


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