Mucus is your body’s natural source of antiseptic enzymes. Not only does it trap harmful foreign substances, but it lines the organs and cavities in your body with a viscous, protective layer that helps food move through your esophagus and protects the walls of your stomach from acidic digestive juices. However, your ENT in Amherst wants you to know that mucus of different colors can spell trouble. If you notice yellow, green, brown, orange, or black mucus, you could have a serious infection on your hands.

Yellow or Green Mucus:

Mucus is normally clear. If it’s white, you’re probably fighting off a cold, but if it’s yellow or green, you’re probably fighting off a bacterial infection. Your body won’t produce yellow or green mucus just because of allergies. If you notice green or yellow mucus, you should speak to your physician as soon as you get the chance so that he/she can provide you with an antibiotic.

Brown or Orange Mucus:

Your mucus might turn red, pink, orange, or even brown if you’ve had a nosebleed or if you’ve been blowing your nose a lot. Pregnant women also sometimes have red or pink mucus because of changing hormones, but in the vast majority of cases, it’s just a sign that the nose is too dry.

When you blow your nose too hard, you risk tearing the membranes covering the inside of the nose. When these membranes dry out, which they often do in winter anyway, they’ll bleed into the mucus. If you notice mucus with a red tint, there’s no need to call the ENT in Amherst. Unless there’s a lot of blood, a bowl of soup and a hot shower will do the trick.

Black Mucus:

Black mucus can be a cause for concern, but it isn’t necessarily. Black mucus can be a sign of lung cancer, pneumonia, or tuberculosis, but it’s more likely a sign of cigarette smoke or pollution. If you live in a very populated city or you’ve been in a large fire, your mucus might turn black temporarily, in which case your mucus will turn back to normal on its own. If it doesn’t, you should call your ENT in Amherst because it could be a sign of an illness.

Your ENT in Amherst is Here for You:

It’s important to pay attention to the color of bodily discharge. The color of your urine, feces, and mucus can tell you a lot about your health. Make sure you’re paying attention to your body so that you spot infections at the very initial stages before they have time to progress into serious conditions.

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