How can I help manage COPD?

How can I help
manage COPD?

You should quit smoking if you have COPD
Quit smoking

Smoking and COPD have long been linked. If you currently smoke, the most important thing you can do to slow the progression of your COPD is quit. Ask your doctor about the resources available to help you quit.

Eat well to get the energy you need
Eat well

A healthy diet can help give you the energy you need. If you’re overweight, losing weight can reduce the amount of effort it takes to do many activities and help you breathe better. Talk to your doctor before starting any nutrition program.

Stay active to improve overall health
Stay active

Exercise may help improve your overall strength and endurance, and may even strengthen the muscles you use to breathe. Getting active now is crucial to staying active long term. Consult your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Practice breathing exercises
Practice breathing exercises for COPD Practice breathing exercises for COPD

Breathing exercises can also be an important part of your COPD treatment plan and may include diaphragmatic breathing, pursed-lip breathing, or controlled coughing. Watch step-by-step videos to learn more.

Be prepared with your rescue medication
Be prepared

COPD symptoms may flare up at any time. Always keep your rescue medication with you. Avoid anything you know that triggers your COPD symptoms (like dust or smoke), and stay inside when outdoor air quality is poor.

Keep it simple and avoid triggers
Keep it simple

Give yourself more time to do everyday activities—don’t rush. Try to simplify basic tasks and chores. For instance, keep items you use frequently in easy-to-reach places. Choose clothing and shoes that are easy to put on and take off.

Go to Helpful Resources for links to COPD foundations and advocacy organizations that may help you live better with COPD.

Watch videos of breathing exercises for COPD

Breathing Exercises for COPD

Discover breathing techniques that may help you get more air you need.