Can Humidifier help COPD? Before we answer this question let us know some essential facts about COPD, how it is caused and what can actually help.
COPD is a progressive Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease which makes breathing tough for patients. The sad part being, it gets worse with time making it even harder to treat the problem completely.
The main cause of COPD is cigarette smoking. As the lungs are continuously exposed to smoke for long term, it starts irritating the lungs with chemical fumes.
Slowly large amount of slimy substance known as mucus is formed inside the lungs which triggers shortness of breath and other symptoms.
Dust and air pollution can also cause COPD which results in severe breathing problems and allergies.
Initially, COPD may lack symptoms or even present only few mild signs. But as the disease gets severe and left untreated, the signs usually get worse. The common symptoms of COPD are:
- Continuous cough that produces mucus which is often referred as smoker’s cough
- Problem in breathing, mainly during physical activity
- Whistling or high-pitched sound while breathing
- Feeling of chest tightness
Symptoms such as swelling in your feet, ankles, legs, lower muscle endurance and weight loss can also be seen in severe cases. Smoking endlessly can damage the lungs at a faster pace and makes you more sick day by day.
To keep safe and avoid severe conditions, you need to change your lifestyle. This will make inhalation easier for you. Here are few common signs and symptoms which lets you understand the need to get diagnosed:
- When you are feeling hard to breathe while talking
- When your fingernails or lips turn grey or blue (the main symptom of declining oxygen level in blood)
- When you are not active mentally
- When your heartbeat is fast than normal
- When the treatment for the mild symptoms is not working
COPD is completely based on indications, symptoms and the test results. While getting the treatment you may be questioned by your doctor about your lifestyle, habits and smoking habits.
Several tests for COPD may also be performed for conforming the problem. Initially the lung test is performed to measure the consistency of air in the lungs when you inhale and exhale.
Spirometry is a common test for COPD which may require to be performed for examining your condition. During this test the technician make use of a small machine which is known as Spirometer. This machine measures the quantity and speed of air you have breathe out.
Other tests for diagnosing the COPD problems may include: Chest CT scan or Chest X-ray, An arterial blood gas test, etc.
Best COPD Treatment Options
COPD has no proper treatment so far. However, certain changes in lifestyle and effective COPD remedies can aid you to feel good, be active than before and helps to slow down the development of disease. The objective of treatment includes:
- Changes in lifestyle like quitting smoking which is an essential step to treat COPD
- Avoid second hand smoking and the places of fumes, dust and other toxic substances which enters your lungs through inhaling air
- Change your eating habits as a part of treatment by taking advice from your doctor who will suggest frequent meals including nutritional supplements and vitamins along with proper rest
- You are also advised to increase physical activity as it strengthens muscles and help you breathe in a proper way
- Vaccines and therapies to reduce the risk and symptoms may also be recommended
Use of Bronchodilators are advised as one of the best medicines for COPD treatments. It relaxes the muscles present around the lungs and helps to open the airways to make breathing normal and easier.
Based upon the severity of COPD, Bronchodilators is advised for every day use. If at all your COPD is extreme, then a combination of Bronchodilators with inhaled Glucocorticosteroids is suggested which helps to reduce inflammation in the airways.
Home Remedies for COPD
As Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is a severe long term condition, home remedies for COPD are often preferred by many to ease the discomfort. This reduces the complications and improves the quality of your life slowly.
Below are few natural home remedies for COPD which you can follow to feel relaxed:
- Count your lifestyle changes which reduce the complications
- Quit smoking as this is the first remedy to follow
- Improve your physical activity with regular exercise and a simple stroll, golfing and even shopping
- Eat healthy diet and maintain weight as underweight may cause problems in breathing; Maintain nutritional balance by eating variety of healthy foods
- Follow certain breathing positions and relaxation techniques such as yoga as this affects more on your breathing
- Develop medication taking habits as per the prescription and use inhalers to breathe easier than before
- Protect yourself from the situations that cause more coughing and breathing problems
- Control your feelings and emotions as it may cause difficulties in breathing; Enjoy every moment and be cheerful all the time
- Reduce stress as it may shorten breathe; Be calm and stress-free
Can Weather Affect COPD?
Health care experts believe that there are number of things which can trigger COPD. Bad weather and temperature are no exception. Actually the cold dry air and even hot air can adversely affect the COPD patient severely.
Bad weather including windy conditions, low or high humidity, etc can also trigger a flare up. It is best to stay indoors during bad weather conditions.
You can make use of a painter’s mask or a scarf to cover up your nose and mouth, when you need to go out on a cold windy or hot summer day.
Can Humidifier for COPD Help?
Humidifier helps to keep the air moist, making it easy to cough up phlegm. These are most helpful for improving the indoors especially when the inside air becomes dry during winters (majorly due to continuous use of room heaters).
Remember that humidifier for COPD must be a cool mist device to ease the dry air conditions. This efficiently helps in controlling the COPD and other related respiratory problems by maintaining humidity range of 40-50%.
Care that the water and filters in the humidifier are changed regularly to keep it hygienically clean.
Overall opting the best humidifier for COPD reduces the nasal irritation making the flow of oxygen easier in the lungs for better breathing. You should definitely make a best choice and buy one for easing your condition.
Eliana is a nurse by profession who loves writing online, spending time with her family and caring for seniors. She has already worked as an associate editor on various mom, baby, home appliances, kitchen and healthy living blogs. In her spare time she also enjoys drawing, reading/writing kindle eBooks and improving her skills a bit.