Are phlegm and mucus the same thing?

You will usually find phlegm in the back of the throat or in the lungs. It is produced by the lower airways. Mucus on the other hand will normally be found in the mucous membranes inside the nose. It acts like a filter protecting your lungs as you inhale. To clear it you simply blow your nose. Phlegm in throat however is thicker and more viscous. You usually only notice it when you cough it up. An excess of this secretion can be a symptom of a respiratory problem such as bronchitis.

How phlegm is formed

Our body produces mucus and phlegm to keep us healthy. It is a protective, slippery substance that your throat, sinuses and lungs produce. This substance then helps to protect tissues in your body and trap any irritants and bacteria. However, if bacteria or a virus manages to get past your body’s natural defense system, then more phlegm is formed. In most people, this excessive production of mucus and phlegm will clear without further problems. However, there are some conditions where the bronchi become filled with mucus, leaving the lungs more vulnerable to infection. Such conditions include bronchiectasis and cystic fibrosis. In both instances, your body is needing to rid itself of this substance, usually by coughing.

In a naturally occurring amount, mucus offers protection by acting as a natural filter for bacteria. Your lungs are highly vulnerable to bacteria and infection. This is because the lungs are an internal organ and the oxygen you breathe in goes directly into your lungs. Read more about how to Improve Your Lung Health.  

How phlegm is removed from lungs

Although unpleasant, you can safely swallow mucus. This is because your body can safely reabsorb it. Phlegm however must be expelled from the body. Advice from healthcare professionals is to cough it up. This is because it will contain virus and dead bacteria. As you cough it up you are helping your body to get rid of the infection. There are now also devices that promote a productive cough, such as the Shaker mucus clearance devices by POWERbreathe

Can phlegm make you cough?

Secretions will be more of a problem at night. This is simply because of gravity. These secretions will feel heavy in your chest. This can bring on coughing. You can allieviate this by elevating your sleeping position. Simply prop yourself up more with a pillow. Coughing is actually your body’s natural way of expelling the phlegm. This will help you to get better.

When to see a doctor

The NHS recommend you see a doctor urgently if you cough up blood. They also recommend seeing your GP if:

  • your cough is lasting for more than 3 weeks (persistent cough)
  • your cough becomes worse quickly 
  • you have a pain in your chest
  • you experience weight loss for no reason
  • your neck at the side feels swollen and painful (swollen glands)
  • breathing becomes more difficult
  • your immune system is weak because of diabetes or chemotherapy for example

Break up phlegm with drugs – or drug-free

Expectorants can be prescribed to help increase bronchial secretion. They are intended to help make it easier to cough it up. But expectorants are medicines. Shaker by POWERbreathe however is an effective drug-free alternative.

Natural remedies for phlegm

A natural, home remedy for getting rid of phlegm in the throat or lungs is to use The Shaker by POWERbreathe. This hand-held, drug-free device literally ‘shakes’ the phlegm in your chest to make it more mobile. The shaking breaks the secretions down and makes it easier for you to cough it up.

How to get rid of phlegm in your lungs naturally

Inside the Shaker device is a weighted ball. As you breathe out through the device, the ball rises and then falls again under its own weight. This happens quickly and feels like vibrations. This vibration and gentle resistance dislodges and thins phlegm. You’re then more able to expel it by coughing.

Who can use the Shaker

Because the Shaker is drug-free and easy-to-use, children and adults can use it. And because it shakes up phlegm, it is ideal for people with respiratory problems. These include Chronic Bronchitis, Bronchiectasis, Emphysema, Asthma and Cystic Fibrosis. There are however some precautions which you will find on the Shaker Classic, Shaker Deluxe and Shaker Plus product pages.

Shaker Deluxe Review

I just got mine in the mail and have been using it for four days or so. I can’t believe how effective it is in getting the mucus out.
Why didn’t my doctor tell me about this? To be very honest, I was half expecting to be disappointed, as usual, like with the NEWEST prescription that they say is the be-all and end-all, only $$$ per month I don’t have. But then, it worked and worked well!!

D Huntingdon