The American Lung Association‚Äôs¬†COPD Fact Sheet¬†is an excellent resource for everything related to COPD, and should be a reference for people who currently have COPD, could potentially be at risk, or who know someone who could potentially be at risk. Here are symptoms, facts, and treatments that are must-know:
The most common symptoms you should look for are:
- Tightness in the chest
- Shortness of breath, even with minimal activity
- Cough which produces mucus
- Wheezing in the chest
Although these symptoms are the most common, it is not guaranteed that every patient will have every one of them. So if you are experiencing any problems you should see your pulmonary doctor to make an accurate diagnosis.
COPD is a progressive disease, meaning it will eventually get worse, but if the right precautions are taken a patient can actually slow down the decline of lung function. There are several treatments for COPD that will help in your everyday life.
- The first thing that all COPD patients need to do is to stop smoking immediately. If there is continued use of cigarettes it will make the disease progress much faster.¬† However, there is more that can aggravate COPD than just cigarette smoke. You must learn to be aware of toxic fumes, smoke from grills, and even some professions such as welders will have to be aware of the fumes they work around every day.
- Another great option is to get referred to a Pulmonary Rehab. This type of rehab will help set you up on a schedule to stay active in a way that is healthy for COPD patients. You will be trained how to breath in different ways such as ‚Äúpursed lip breathing‚ÄĚ, as well as teaching you how to begin an exercise routine that will increase your stamina.
- Doctors also like to refer their patients to a Nutritionist. This is because many people who suffer with COPD will lose weight and find it harder to eat and stay at a healthy weight. Nutritionists will help set up a¬†diet plan specifically for COPD patients¬†to help keep you healthy.
- In some more severe cases of COPD, sometimes oxygen therapy is prescribed.¬† Medical equipment like oxygen concentrators & oxygen tanks can often times help patients perform daily activities with more ease and also sleep more at nighttime.
Read more on the COPD Fact Sheet:
COPD is manageable but has no cure at this time, so it is important to talk with your Pulmonary Doctor to get the correct treatment. To get more information and facts on this lung disease please visit the COPD fact sheet here:¬†http://www.lung.org/lung-disease/copd/resources/facts-figures/COPD-Fact-Sheet.html.