November is National COPD Awareness Month, a time dedicated to promoting a better understanding of the respiratory disease. COPD stands for “Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.” This illness obstructs the airway and makes it difficult for those who have it to breathe.
COPD may manifest itself as one or more of these symptoms:
- Difficulty breathing
- Constant coughing
- Overproduction of mucus
The large majority of people with COPD either actively smoke or used to smoke. However, there is a percentage of people who suffer from the disease that have never smoked cigarettes.
A great deal of people who have COPD do not realize it. Symptoms of COPD are often confused with signs of aging, and many do not seek treatment until their case is severe. There are simple breathing exercises physicians can have patients perform to test the function of their lungs to determine if they have COPD.
There is no cure for COPD, but there are continual advances in treatment for people with the illness. Treatment for COPD can help people regain their strength and once again do everyday activities. If you have been diagnosed with COPD, know that doctors in the field are working tirelessly to create avenues for rehabilitation.
National COPD Awareness Month helps those who have never encountered COPD to learn about the disease and understand the effects. Our goal is to help people find compassion through understanding and education surrounding the disease. For people who have COPD, National COPD Awareness Month provides a community of people to surround and support them!
If you have questions about COPD or National COPD awareness month, The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has great informative content here: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/all-publications-and-resources/pulmonary-rehabilitation-path-breathing-better
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