Treatments For COPD
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD is one of many incurable diseases that affect the lungs, gradually and irreversibly destroying lung tissues until the person suffering from it succumbs totally to the disease. COPD is caused by chronic chain-smoking and prolonged exposure to fine, harsh elements such as carbon, silica, and asbestos. But even if it’s a little bit depressing to think that the disease has no cure, still, there are a number of effective treatments for COPD that can alleviate the pain, discomfort, and slow down its deleterious progression.
If you suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, you may have to set realistic goals with your physician in order to promote the quality of life and steer you clear of the many discomforts that it brings. Your doctor aims to improve lung capacity and function, halt or slow disease progression, and curb the occurrence of exacerbations or worsening of symptoms.
The number one and most important thing that you must do when it comes to COPD treatment is to stop smoking. If you’re a chain smoker for more than twenty years, even if it’s a little too late to stop the habit, you can at least try to cut down the number of sticks or packs that you smoke per day. You need to set things right and have a mind set to gradually stop smoking. Unless you finally give up this unhealthy habit, you have little chances of overcoming the complications and the disease itself.
Since COPD reduces lung functioning, these vital organs are exposed to constant infection and lung capacity to oxygen is lessened. COPD patients experience constant shortness of breath and they are very susceptible to many respiratory infections. Antibiotics and corticosteroids are given to them to fight infection and its complications, while bronchodilators help in clearing and expansion of the bronchioles, the basic unit of lung tissue where gas exchange with the bloodstream occurs.
Oxygen therapy is also given. 2 liters of oxygen per minute is delivered to a patient, not much, but just enough alert the body’s respiratory center in the brainstem to trigger breathing mechanism.
COPD may pose irreversible damage to the lungs, but the treatments mentioned are administered all in all in order to improve the quality of life. Ask your doctor about them.