Long term chronic, progressive lung disorders like chronic bronchitis, emphysema and chronic obstructive airways disease are categorized as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease have breathing difficulties because of airflow obstruction. Smoking accelerates the development of the chronic lung disorders. Other factors like passive smoking, exposure to polluted air or harmful chemical gas, long term exposure to dust also trigger chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Proper precautionary measures are to be taken to prevent COPD before it besets. If you are already patient of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease then you can follow certain lifestyle guidelines to keep away from further complications and slow down the growth of the disease.
Top Prevention Strategies
1. Quit Smoking
It is estimated that 80%-90% of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients are cigarette smokers. Smoking is regarded as the sole risk factor for COPD. If you are non-smoker then there is less chance of getting this disease. But as a cigarette smoker, the best thing that you can follow to prevent this deadly chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to develop, you should stop smoking right now. If you are chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patient, quitting cigarette smoking can suspend its advancement and cut down the risk of early death. This particular precautionary measure is very crucial for the members of your family who acquired COPD very early in their thirties or forties.
It is beneficial to quit smoking even after so many years of smoking habits. When you stop this long time harmful habit of yours, not only reduce the damage to your lungs but also you prevent passive smoking for nonsmokers.
2. Avoid polluted air
Do not go out when quality of air is very unfavourable for any outdoor work. Keep safe distance from polluted air. Try not to expose yourself to any type of chemical gas. Stay away from dust particles. Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are advised to avoid these types of irritants. As COPD patient you may observe that you are showing fewer symptoms if you stay at home when air is very much polluted and not suitable for your health. If you are to go out for any work then put on mask fitted with special filter.
3. Stay away from people who have respiratory infections
As COPD patient you are advised to keep safe distance from infected persons who have respiratory infections like Pneumonia and Bronchitis. These infections can infuse severe complications to patients who already have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Your physician may administer pneumonia vaccination and appropriate flu vaccine to combat these highly transmissible respiratory infections.
4. Blood Test to measure the amount of Alpha-1-Antitrypsin:
Alpha-1-Antitrypsin is a necessary protein to shield the lungs from COPD. Blood test for this protein is must to determine the levels of alpha-1-antitrypsin. Low levels of this very necessary protein can accelerate the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Even if you do not smoke and you have developed COPD then you have acquired the disease genetically. It is advised to have a blood test for alpha-1-antitrypsin. If the test shows low levels of this very necessary protein then you must consult your physician to have appropriate treatment.
5. Changes in your food habits
You have to drink adequate amount of water that is one to two liters per day. Water is apt ingredient to reduce the accumulation of heavy mucus in your lungs. It allows you to breathe with ease and prevents COPD. If you drink enough water daily it also allows your blood to flow smoothly and your heart can stay without any kind of strain.
You have to say no to food items rich in calories. Try to avoid salt in your food to prevent chronic obstructive pulmonary disease as these kinds of foods are responsible for accumulation of fat in the arteries which can cause severe malfunctions of the lungs. Do not eat canned vegetables and soups. Do avoid cakes and sweet pastries. Do not consume processed food items. Eat fresh vegetables and fruits. Your dietician can make appropriate diet chart to prevent COPD by providing you best combination of foods which can make your lungs and heart healthy. A proper diet can make your body healthy. You may be advised to have nutritional supplements if show underweight. You have to loose weight if you are overweight. So that you may not face any kind of breathing difficulty when you are doing any kind of strenuous activities.
6. Changes in your lifestyle
If you are COPD patient, do follow certain measures to feel better and in turn your lungs will not be deteriorated very easily.
You must control your breathing habits. Do consult your doctor about certain breathing techniques which you may follow throughout your daily activities. You may take advice from your doctor about breathing postures. Techniques for adequate relaxation should be dealt with when you cannot breathe properly.
Do carry out physical exercises daily at home. Daily work outs can make your lungs and heart healthy. Physical exercise allows your heart to transmit oxygen all over your body. You may practice aerobics which strengthen your heart and lungs. These types of workouts prevent chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to a great extent.
As COPD patient you may experience that air passages in your lungs are obstructed with mucus and you find very difficult to clear them. You can clear the air passages by restrained coughing by using a humidifier.
7. Avoid crowds and cold air
This is very important for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patient. If you are in the midst of a crowd, you are advised to use a proper medical mask. Mask blocks germs to reach your lungs.
It has been discovered that cold air can cause severe type of broncho spasm. Cold air can also cause shortness of breath. So before going outdoors in cold air you have to cover your nose with cold-air mask.
But very importantly you must consult your doctor immediately if you find prolonged breathing problems.