Pointers for Improving Your Respiratory Health
Chronic respiratory diseases kill. Around 4.6 Americans died from various forms of respiratory diseases from 1980 to 2014. The rate at which people are dying is also rising. Data from 1980 registered 41 deaths per 100,000 population. By 2014, the ratio has increased to 53 is to 100,000.
Asthma, COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Emphysema and even lung cancer are the top respiratory illnesses. 6.2 million children are currently suffering from asthma. It’s at the top of chronic diseases among children. Smokers, upon reaching a certain age, are almost certain to have COPD or chronic shortness of breath. The same report from 1980 to 2014 cited that 3.9 million people died due to COPD.
It might be too late for older heavy smokers afflicted with COPD, but if you have a loved one suffering from asthma or other forms of respiratory illness, there’s plenty to do to improve their respiratory health. If you haven’t booked duct-cleaning services for your Minneapolis home, do it now. Dust and other airborne allergens are the enemies of asthmatic people.
Know the Diseases
Fine one moment. Gasping for air the next. Nothing pains parents more than seeing their child gasping for breath while they go through an asthma attack. Know that there are triggers to asthma attacks, like pollen, dust, airborne dirt, or pet dander. Even mold could trigger attacks. Eliminate the occurrence of these triggers to keep your children’s lungs healthy. Make sure that you have on-hand anti-inflammatory medications.
Quitting smoking can be the first step to treating COPD. New forms of respiratory therapies are also available. Some doctors will prescribe a maintenance medicine. But note that COPD cannot be reversed. Chronic bronchitis or constant coughing falls under COPD and is therefore treated the same way.
Emphysema is the inability of the lungs to exhale air because smoking has severely damaged the air sacs. Unfortunately, the best scenario is the mere slowing down of the disease’s progression upon the termination of smoking.
Pneumonia among relatively weak and older adults could be a silent killer. Pneumonia means that infection has set-in in the air sacs.
Improving Your Respiratory Health
Never assume that it’s just an innocent cough. Your lungs might already be infected. Here are some helpful tips to improve your respiratory health.
- Quit smoking. Smoking causes lung cancer. That’s not even debatable anymore. It destroys the air passages and causes inflammation.
- Clean your hands. You don’t need to be obsessive-compulsive about it but washing your hands if you just came from a toilet or you just blew your nose will help prevent the spread of disease. Wash them especially following contact with surfaces from public places, like a bar counter or toilet doorknobs. Use soap and rinse thoroughly with water.
- Stay away from outside pollutants. Secondhand smoke is a trigger for asthma. Air pollution and constant inhalation of carbon-monoxide can cause long term respiratory problems. Wear a protective mask if you plan to stay outside for a long period.
- Monitor air quality at home. Check if no leaks or moisture can breed mold. When this enters your air duct system and subsequently inhaled, you run the risk of respiratory infection as well. Check the air quality of your home regularly.
These are simple steps that are sometimes ignored or forgotten. But these can help you improve your respiratory health and avoid chronic illnesses.