Lifestyle Changes to Manage COPD
Currently, there is no way to cure COPD, but with lifestyle changes and medication, the condition is manageable. Most commonly, people control their COPD symptoms by becoming healthier and remaining informed about their condition’s progress. These are a small handful of lifestyle changes you can make to more effectively manage your COPD.
Promote Lung Health
Protecting the health of your lungs isn’t so tricky if you know exactly which measures to take. First and foremost, you should give up smoking if you already haven’t. Smoke is an irritant known to worsen symptoms associated with COPD. Likewise, eating a healthy diet can help allocate more energy to damaged lung tissues and airways.
Avoid chemicals, vapors, and dusts, and try to avoid hairsprays and perfumes. Even the chemical fumes from your cleaning products can be enough to irritate your lungs. Always opt to purchase natural products that are scent-free.
Whenever possible, expose yourself to clean air. Warm days that are accompanied by dryness and humidity have been linked to increase irritation for COPD sufferers.
Any healthcare professional will advise exercise as a means for managing COPD. A lack of physical activity can actually promote worsened symptoms, and breathing can progressively become harder. Exercise can strengthen muscles used for breathing, and it can promote lung function and health.
Luckily, there are many ways you can exercise on a daily basis. You don’t need expensive equipment or tools to get moving and active. For example, many people with COPD turn to yoga, walking, and dancing as a means to exercise.
Talk to your doctor before beginning a particular exercise regimen. He/she will be able to help you understand which exercises are personally going to be helpful for you and your COPD. A pulmonary rehabilitation group can also be helpful.
Maintaining Your COPD
COPD is a progressive condition, and this essentially means it will worsen with time. However, properly managing the disease will dramatically slow its progress. Keep a log of notes from your doctor’s office visits, record symptoms by date and time, and note your reactions to exercise and treatment.
Treatment is a very common lifestyle change that people make when managing their COPD. Various medications are designed to stop the condition’s progress, relieve symptoms, and treat infections associated with the condition. Simply put, breathing and completing daily tasks is generally a lot easier with medication.
To treat COPD, doctors will generally prescribe one or more of three common medications to patients. These are:
- Bronchodilators. They are used to keep airways in the lungs clear for easy air flow.
- Steroids. They are used to inhibit inflammation.
- Antibiotic treatment. It is used to control infections in relation to COPD.
To learn more, speak with your doctor about how you can manage your COPD more effectively.