Coping with COPD



Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD,can be a difficult condition to live with, impacting your quality of life. The impact on the respiratory function can feel uncomfortable.Even worse, COPD may limit the activities you can enjoy. However, there are options available to help you learn to cope with this disease and give you a higher quality of life.

If you are newly diagnosed with COPD, you may be wondering how this will impact the rest of your life. COPD is not curable, but there are ways to improve your health and minimize the negative side effects of this disease. Your lungs are fighting to get oxygen to feed your body, and you need to help maximize their efforts. Utilizing your treatment options and staying active are two of the best ways to cope with COPD and live a life you enjoy.

Treatment Options for COPD

It is important to have an internal medicine physician as part of your healthcare team if you have COPD. There are many different treatment options that can help you control and care for your disease to protect your health and wellbeing. Medications can include controllers and rescue inhalers, as well as oxygen therapy. However, some of the most useful treatments are not prescriptions, but changes in your lifestyle. Some of these can include:

  • Quitting smoking
  • Avoiding air-borne irritants
  • Preventing colds, flus and respiratory problems
  • Breathing exercises
  • Clearing your lungs
  • Healthy diet and plenty of fluids
  • Maintain a healthy weight with diet and exercise

Your internal medicine specialist can discuss many different options for controlling your COPD to give you a higher quality of life. If you take charge of your disease, you can help improve your health and reduce your discomfort.

Stay Active

When it is hard to breathe, you can become wary of continuing to do the activities you enjoy. However, with COPD, the more active you stay, the better off you will be. Often patients with COPD have been reducing their activities for months or years because they became fatigued or out of breath quickly. Restoring your activity levels can help recondition your lungs, allowing you to do more and enjoy life more fully. Your doctor can help you devise an exercise plan to help you increase your activity level, which will benefit your physical and mental health as you cope with living with COPD.

At Internal Medicine Diagnostic, we offer both family care and internal medicine care for our patients, including those with COPD. If you want to learn more about how you can improve your health and quality of life after a COPD diagnosis, contact our clinic in Magnolia to schedule a consultation with one of our internal medicine specialists.