Carbon monoxide is a particularly dangerous substance since this deadly gas is both colorless and odorless. Most of us hear horror stories every year and most of these tragedies are very avoidable. Whole families have been killed when a faulty furnace or some other device leaks carbon monoxide into their home. In other instances, people in parked cars lose their lives because of malfunctioning exhaust systems that leak and fill the car with the deadly gas.
Every home should have functioning carbon monoxide detectors and any suspicions about faulty exhaust systems on cars should be checked out without delay. Anyone who suspects that they may be in the presence of carbon monoxide should leave the area immediately and notify the proper authorities. Without the benefit of carbon monoxide detectors, it is especially helpful to know about the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
1. Shortness of Breath
Whether or not the cause is carbon monoxide or something else, feeling short of breath is never something that should be taken lightly. Although there are many causes for this condition, if you have more than one person in the same area that is feeling short of breath, it could indicate the presence of carbon monoxide or something else that is dangerous.
Carbon monoxide is notorious for this symptom and it’s particularly insidious since it can make you feel sleepy enough to drift off and never wake up again. Again, it is particularly important to consider carbon monoxide as the cause if more than one person begins to feel very run-down and lethargic. Feeling worn out and tired for a prolonged period could be an indication of a small amount of carbon monoxide leaking into a living space, but with this deadly gas, even a small amount is too much!
This is a very common symptom of carbon monoxide poisoning which interferes with your body’s ability to deliver oxygen to vital organs, including the brain, and that can cause confusion. This is a tough one since people experience confusion differently and it could interfere with your ability to figure out that you are in a very dangerous situation.
This may be one of the less helpful clues that can alert you to the presence of carbon monoxide since so many people get headaches for so many different reasons. It might be more of an indication if you always seem to get headaches only when you are at home or at some other location. Obviously, more than one person experiencing a headache at the same time is also a clue that carbon monoxide could be the cause.
Again, since many people experience nausea for so many reasons, it is particularly indicative of carbon monoxide if you always seem to feel nauseous when you are in a particular place or if multiple people are all experiencing it at the same time. Experiencing this along with some of the other symptoms listed here is also something to watch for.
6. Blurry Vision
Since carbon monoxide has an adverse effect on so many bodily functions, it’s no surprise to find out that it can interfere with your vision as well. Blurred vision is noted as one of the more advanced symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning and means that you need to take action immediately and leave the area to seek fresh air and medical help.