(NaturalNews) Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is mainly caused by smoking. Subjecting the lungs to cigarette smoke for a prolonged period of time degenerates and damages the healthy cells of lungs and with time, breathing becomes compromised. Much of the COPD treatments are aimed at preventing further damage and making a patient feel better. COPD, most often, is a combination of two conditions: chronic bronchitis, where bronchial tubes that carry air become inflamed and produce a lot of mucus, and emphysema, where tiny air sacs that expand and contract when breathing in and out are damaged, making the person feel short of breath.
Lifestyle changes can reduce COPD symptoms and progression
Lifestyle changes may help ease breathing and reduce episodes of COPD exacerbation in which sudden flare-ups of symptoms occur. Patients can adopt self-rehabilitation COPD treatment programs that help manage the symptoms and prevent its progression. Simple changes in lifestyle coupled with complete avoidance of tobacco smoking can help patients improve quality of life.
Nutritional intervention can help in managing COPD
Nutritional intervention in COPD treatments have many benefits. Fruits and vegetables have shown to have remarkable effects in preventing the progression of COPD. Eating foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, such as sardines, flax seeds, salmon, and walnuts also help reduce the risk of COPD or decrease its rate of progression. Too much salt (sodium) should be avoided also. Salt will cause water retention which could affect the ability to breathe. Some fruits such as avocados, melons, and apples, which are effective in treating other ailments, may not be recommended when dealing with COPD. These fruits cause bloating and gas which may lead to breathing problems.
Improve quality of air in the home
Air quality in the home may be poor due to allergens and irritants, which may trigger COPD symptoms. Flare-ups can be avoided by ensuring that good air quality is maintained. Giving up smoking is imperative, along with staying away from second-hand smoke. One of the best natural ways to manage COPD symptoms is to keep the house free from dampness and/or moisture.
Increased moisture content in your home will lead to growth of mildew, bacteria and mold, which can cause infections. Dampness may also trigger allergic conditions of the respiratory system causing breathing problems. Try to keep the bathrooms well ventilated and repair any leaking or dripping faucets. The humidity needs to be controlled by eliminating condensation and moisture. Polluted air needs to be extracted from the house and if there are gas appliances like dryers and water heaters; they need to be connected to a vent that emits smoke outside.
Emotions and feelings will aggravate COPD symptoms
Emotional response has its effects on COPD treatments. Feelings of anxiety may occur when the brain senses that breathing is compromised. This may create panic and could aggravate symptoms of COPD.
Similarly, depression is inherent in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and this is because the breathlessness and loss of appetite that may result in weight loss leaves the person with feelings of negativity and loss. Depression may also result in resuming unhealthy habits, such as smoking cigarettes and drinking too much alcohol, causing further deterioration.