Florence Pugh has opened up about having tracheomalacia, a medical condition that impacts her breathing, and why it meant her family had to move to Spain when she was younger.
The Don’t Worry Darling star, 26, opened up about the condition, and its impact on her childhood, during Monday’s episode of Running Wild With Bear Grylls, where she revealed that doctors had advised the move from her home of Oxford, England, to somewhere with a “hotter climate”.
“We were in Spain because I have a breathing issue, and when I was younger they kind of just advised that a hotter climate would be better,” Pugh said, according to Yahoo. “I have asthma and I have this thing called tracheomalacia as well. And so from a young age, I’ve just had a different breathing system.”
Tracheomalacia is a condition that occurs in a newborn when the “cartilage in the windpipe, or trachea, has not developed properly,” according to Johns Hopkins Medicine, which notes that the “floppy” walls of the trachea result in breathing difficulties shortly after birth. Fortunately, the condition and associated breathing problems generally go away on their own, however, it can lead to respiratory illnesses and a lingering cough.
According to Pugh, the condition, which she notes is the reason for her raspy voice, now typically only affects her if she is sick. “Now as an adult, unless I get ill, it doesn’t really affect me as intensely as it did when I was younger,” she said.
However, the actor still continues to take precautions to protect herself from respiratory problems associated with the medical condition, with Pugh recently telling Harper’s Bazaar that it is why she spent the first part of the Covid-19 lockdown in the warm climate of Los Angeles, California.
This is not the first time that Pugh has opened up about her medical condition and her family’s move to Spain to safeguard her health, as she told Vogue in 2020 that she lived in the country from age three to six with her parents and her two older siblings Arabella and Sebastian after doctors suggested the move would be beneficial.
At the time, Pugh revealed that she’d spent a significant portion of time in hospitals as a toddler due to the medical condition, but that she now just has “a very scary cough”.
While speaking to Sue Perkins for her podcast Sue Perkins: An Hour or So With… in July 2020, Pugh revealed that it was also on her mother’s guidance that she spent the first portion of the pandemic in California, as she noted that her mom has “always had to be aware of new diseases, new illnesses that could potentially really hurt me” since she was diagnosed with the condition as a child.
“I’ve had this breathing thing since I was tiny, so my mum’s always had to be aware of new diseases, new illnesses that could potentially really hurt me,” Pugh explained, adding: “When I was a kid, I was always ill. But now that I’m older, I don’t get ill, but when I do, it’s the same intensity as it was when I was always ill.”
In the latest episode of Running Wild With Bear Grylls: The Challenge, Pugh and Grylls navigate their way through the rainforests of Costa Rica, with a preview clip showing the pair having to rappel from a helicopter down into the dense forest.