What are the Symptoms of Lack of Oxygen in Blood?

Hypoxia or lack of oxygen can occur due to many reasons such as being in higher altitudes or health problems that severely hamper respiration or gas exchange functions of the lungs. The symptoms of lack of oxygen in blood are also seen in children with underdeveloped respiratory system. However, recognizing the symptoms is important to avoid the situation from getting complicated. Here are the symptoms of lack of oxygen in blood.

Symptoms of Lack of Oxygen

  • Shortness of Breath

    With low levels of oxygen present in the blood, you might feel as if you are out of breath. The brain detects the decreased oxygen levels, and signals the body to take more breaths to compensate for the oxygen demands.

  • Headache

    When the brain does not receive enough oxygen, you might experience headache and uneasy feeling in the head.

  • Fatigue

    The body needs oxygen to produce energy in the cells. When the cells do not receive oxygen, you will feel exhausted and fatigued.

  • Nausea

    Lack of oxygen also causes nausea as there is a change in the composition of blood being circulated in the body.

  • Change in Skin Color

    The color of well-oxygenated blood is usually bright red. When the oxygen levels are low, and carbon dioxide gets accumulated in the blood, the blood becomes deep red and appears blue on the skin. If the blood has carbon monoxide in the blood (as a result of smoking or breathing smoke) the skin looks cherry red in color.

  • Changes in Consciousness and Coma

    With such low levels of oxygen being supplied to the brain, the levels of consciousness are bound to change. If the oxygen deprivation is severe enough, it can also lead to coma.

When you feel that you are short of breath or not breathing well enough to get the oxygen your body needs, all you have to do is just calm down, and breathe into your stomach (diaphragmatic breathing). If the symptoms of lack of oxygen are of serious nature, seek medical help immediately.

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