If you have an older relative living with you and constantly complain that they have difficulty breathing, don’t brush it off. It’s important to have symptoms like this checked promptly. Older individuals may be prone to a breathing disorder called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD. This condition is most commonly caused by smoking but may also be caused by other factors. Being exposed to second-hand smoke may also cause a person to get COPD.
Important Self-Management Options for Seniors with COPD
Although this disease may seem frightening, the good news is that there are many ways to help your older relatives and loved ones cope with their symptoms. This blog post will shed some light on the signs to look out for in COPD and self-management care options to improve their quality of life.
Signs of COPD in Seniors
Signs of COPD include shortness of breath, a chronic cough, production of sputum, difficulty keeping up with usual activities, tightening of the chest, wheezing, appetite loss, and fatigue. It is essential to have your loved ones if you suspect that they may have COPD. Many elderly individuals make the mistake of thinking that their COPD symptoms are just part of the normal aging process. Some may also blame their symptoms on a lack of fitness.
Self-Management Tips for Seniors with COPD
Here are a few self-management strategies to help improve the quality of life for seniors who have COPD. If you live with a family member who has been diagnosed with COPD, it is a good idea to encourage them to follow these tips to feel less of their symptoms more often.
1 – Quit Smoking
Smoking is the leading cause of COPD and its symptoms, which means that stopping the habit is the best way to prevent the condition from worsening. Not only will it slow down the progression of the disease, but it will also stop the spread of second-hand smoke and keep other people in the house safe from developing the condition themselves.
2 – Eat a Healthy Diet
When a person has COPD, they will have to exert more effort when they breathe than individuals who do not have COPD. Eating a healthy and balanced diet will help them get the nutrients their bodies need to cope with breathing more heavily.
3 – Breathe Clean Air
You should always take the quality of the air that a person with COPD breathes into account. They should avoid breathing in chemical fumes and other harmful gases. Most of the time, they should stay indoors or at home where the air quality can be controlled.
4 – Follow the Physician’s Instructions
Lastly, people with COPD must follow their physician’s specific guidelines and instructions. This will help them keep their symptoms at bay and help them maintain a healthier lifestyle.
People with COPD will have to adjust their lifestyle according to their condition, but that doesn’t mean that they will not manage their symptoms conveniently and healthily. Ensuring the tips mentioned above and seeking medical attention when necessary will ensure that patients with COPD will live long and healthy lives long after being diagnosed.
If you need home care for your loved one who has COPD, Gateway Home Health offers high-quality homecare services. We offer the best home-based patient care provided by trained clinicians and therapists. Contact us today and get the best care for your loved one with COPD.