Spitting up blood any time is always a cause of concern, but if you're spitting up blood in the morning, this could happen due to a number of different reasons. It could be to an acute injury or it may indicate a rather life-threatening emergency. If you're spitting blood in the morning, it may have something to do with your lungs. You need to pay more attention to the color and texture of blood to determine a cause. It could be pink or bright red – it may be frothy or mixed with mucus.
Coughing up blood, or medically known as hemoptysis, shouldn't be taken lightly. It is always a good idea to go see your doctor for proper diagnosis, but you can always consider certain factors and symptoms to understand the severity of the situation. Nevertheless, you shouldn't worry much about producing a little blood-tinged sputum.
Where Is the Blood Coming From?
Bleeding from your throat or mouth, or a severe nosebleed can cause blood to show up in your saliva. It is, however, not like “coughing” blood that involves getting it from deep within your lungs. If it's coming from your chest, you will notice some mucus as well. It is also important to determine whether the blood is coming from your stomach or the source is your lungs or airways.
Causes of Spitting Up Blood in the Morning
You may be spitting blood in morning for a number of different reasons. Here is a list of more common causes.
1. Injury or Trauma
You may start spitting up blood in the morning due to an injury. Injury and trauma are usually the least serious causes of producing blood. This may happen due to an injury or trauma to your gums and teeth. Sometimes, you damage a tooth or gum tissue by grinding during sleep. Your gums will bleed and you will notice blood when you spit in the morning. You may also notice blood because of drainage that may occur with sinus infection. This will cause dryness and make sensitive tissues found in your throat to bleed.
2. Drug Use
You may be spitting up blood in the morning because you use certain types of illicit drugs. Several drugs can have a negative impact on your respiratory system, especially the drugs that you snort, smoke, or inhale. This, in many cases, causes bleeding even after several hours of drug use. If drug use is the cause of concern here, you may notice blood daily when you wake up in the morning. It is worth mentioning that some prescription medications such as blood thinners and anticoagulant medications can cause hemoptysis.
You are more likely to be a victim of lung cancer if you smoke heavily, and it may also be the underlying cause of spitting up blood in the morning. Many people don't realize how damaging the effect of smoking is on the tissues of their respiratory system. Those damaged tissues may bleed and you notice blood in mucus and phlegm.
4. Pulmonary Embolism
Spitting up blood in the morning is not always due to a mild illness or injury, sometimes it could indicate a serious health condition as well. In some cases, bloody mucus is the symptom of pulmonary embolism, which is a medical emergency and even causes sudden death. It usually happens when a traveling blood clot finds its way into the arteries of your lungs and restricts the blood flow. You will, however, notice several other symptoms as well, and the most common are chest pain and shortness of breath. You may also notice pink, foamy bloody mucus brought up with a cough.
There can be some other reasons why you're coughing up blood. It could happen due to severe coughing - a long-term lung condition called bronchiectasis that leads to the accumulation of mucus in your airways, and a chest infection that usually accompanies with a fever, chest pain, and sputum that contains pus. You may be spitting up blood in the morning due to the accumulation of fluid around your lungs, which will produce sputum with pinkish color – you're more at risk if you have pre-existing heart problems. Other common causes of spitting up blood is lung cancer, tuberculosis (TB), or cancer of windpipe or throat. In rare cases, blood stained mucus represent a heart valve problem called mitral stenosis.
You may select a treatment option depending upon the underlying cause. You may try cough suppressants if severe coughing is making you cough up blood. Be sure to consult with your doctor because some of these medicines can cause airway blockages.
When to See a Doctor
It is important to go see your doctor when you continue to notice blood in mucus, even after using certain medications and taking some self-care measures. You should seek immediate medical help though if you cough up blood and have other symptoms such as chest pain, fever, dizziness, shortness of breath, light-headedness, and blood in stools or urine. If you're noticing too much of blood, don't wait to see your doctor.