In the US, over 16.4 million people are diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). Worse yet is, there may be millions of other people who have this lung disease but just don’t know it have you recently been diagnosed with COPD? Then you might be going through a difficult time.
However, with the right COPD treatment guidelines, you can stay in better health and improve your quality of life. Here are some ways you can live with COPD.
If you’re a smoker and haven’t already quit with the news of your diagnosis, then you really should consider doing so. We don’t need to tell you all the health issues that can come with smoking; we’re sure you know them already.
So it might be easier said than done to quit smoking, despite knowing the health risks that come with this habit. It’s ok to ask for help. In fact, we encourage you to!
You can ask your friends and family to provide some support. And you can go to your doctor to ask for prescription medications that can make breaking the nicotine habit a bit easier.
Whatever you choose to do, do something. The first step might be the hardest, but once you overcome it, you’ll stop smoking in no time!
By quitting smoking, you can prevent COPD from getting worse. As a result, it can help you with your ability to breathe.
Eat a Good Diet
When you don’t get enough nutrients, it can be more difficult for you to keep your body up and running. Take a good look at what your diet is like and replace unhealthy things like soda and junk food with healthier options, such as water and nuts for snacks.
If you’re underweight, speak with your doctor. They can recommend you the appropriate nutritional supplements to help you put on some pounds.
On the other hand, if you’re overweight, eating a healthier diet can help you shed some pounds instead. Losing some weight can help you with breathing.
Make sure you drink plenty of water. By staying hydrated, you’ll make it easier on yourself to cough up mucus from your lungs.
It might sound strange to recommend more exercise for people with a lung condition, but physical activity can actually help you out. This is because exercise can improve your endurance and strengthen your body’s muscles, including those used for breathing.
Of course, you shouldn’t push yourself to do activities that might over-exert you and result in injuries or additional health problems. You should always check in with your doctor to see what exercises are appropriate for your situation.
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Take the Appropriate Medications
There are a few medications you can take for COPD. Your doctor will know which is best for you and can prescribe them if they feel you need them.
Some common COPD treatment medications include bronchodilators, inhaled steroids, oral steroids, combination inhalers, phosphodiesterase-4 inhibitors, theophylline, and antibiotics if you have any respiratory infections.
Many people with COPD and asthma are prescribed Trelegy Ellipta, which is a long-term COPD treatment. Many who find the Trelegy Ellipta cost high can find alternative ways to get medication, such as from online Canadian pharmacies, which offer high-quality medicines at much lower costs. This enables you to manage COPD without draining your finances.
Try Oxygen Therapy
If you have mild COPD, you probably don’t need oxygen therapy. However, for those with more severe cases, you can benefit from this treatment.
Your doctor will prescribe you one of several medical devices that can help deliver oxygen to your lungs so you don’t get winded as easily. Some can be worn for everyday use while you’re out and about while others can be used while you’re sleeping.
Avoid Air Pollution if Possible
This might be tough to do if you have obligations you can’t get out of, such as work or childcare duties. However, you’ll want to avoid being out if there is air pollution, like from a forest fire nearby. Always check air quality forecasts so you can plan your days around air pollution if possible.
You’ll also want to avoid going places that have lots of smoke, like bars or even clubs. Even if you’ve quit smoking or aren’t a smoker, secondhand smoke can still do a lot of damage to your lungs.
Surgery should be one of the last options to explore. This is usually reserved for those who have severe emphysema and they don’t see significant enough results from the medications they’re on.
One option is lung volume reduction surgery. The surgeon removed damaged tissue from your lungs so your healthy lung tissue can work better.
Another option is a lung transplant. While this will essentially give you a second chance at healthy lungs, you will have to be on immune-suppressing medications for the rest of your life. Not to mention, this is a major operation as well.
You can also have a bullectomy. This is where the surgeon remove bullae from your lungs so you can breathe better.
Follow These COPD Treatment Guidelines for a Healthier Life
With this article, you now have some great COPD treatment guidelines to follow. By doing so, you can live a healthier and more normal life.
So remember to quit smoking, eat healthier, exercise more, take the appropriate medications, and avoid air pollution if possible.
Of course, before you make any huge lifestyle changes, make sure you consult with your doctor first. They’ll know your personal situation the best and can advise you on the optimal ways to go about COPD management. Never make any changes without first getting your doctor’s approval.
Want to learn more about living with COPD? Then check out our other blog posts now.