Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a collective term referring to progressive lung diseases. These include emphysema, chronic bronchitis and refractory (non-reversible) asthma. It is chiefly characterised by shortness of breath and a sense of tightness in the chest. People suffering from this disease face relentless hurdles in their everyday life while going about their normal routine.
Consequently, medication cannot be the only way to tackle with their life situation. Pulmonary rehabilitation is a way of treating and assisting the patient physically, emotionally and psychologically. The program basically focuses on rebuilding and enhancing the patient’s capability to enjoy their lifestyle smoothly.
Pulmonary rehabilitation as a recuperative measure
The objective is never to let the disease become a hindrance in their daily life. Pulmonary rehabilitation for COPD involves certain activities that may enable the patient to cope better with their breathlessness. These include limb exercises, breathing techniques, dietary plan and imparting full-fledged knowledge about the condition and the accompanying medication.
In order to join a pulmonary rehabilitation program, one has to get a referral from their respective doctor. The report should confirm that they are suffering from COPD. Then the patient will collaborate with a team of specialists and nutritionists who can advise them on every aspect of dealing with this physiological shortcoming.
Limb exercises: In any pulmonary rehabilitation program, physical exercise is a vital therapeutic measure. Most of the rehab centres emphasize on leg exercises or treadmill running. This is to enhance the patient’s capacity to walk up stairs without much unease. Arm and chest exercises are also undertaken as they are responsible for stabilizing the breathing capacity of the patient. The key is to move ahead slowly one step at a time.
Dietary plan: Nutritionists are also involved in this program as they recommend the right kind of food to be consumed by the patients. The program involves a bit of physical strain to stretch the patient’s limb movement and breathing capacity. Thus dieticians recommend a lot of proteinaceous foods during this phase. This further stimulates the growth of muscles in the patient and augments their muscle potential, thus easing COPD complications.
Educating about the condition: In pulmonary rehabilitation groups, awareness is created about the disease. This includes educating the patients about their plan of medication or how to utilize the inhaler in the correct way. They are given sessions on strategies that can assist them in their day to day life. It is one means of making them self-sufficient and thus boosting their morale. By knowing what they are suffering from and what are the possible measures for it, COPD patients can be better prepared for any emergency.
Pulmonary rehabilitation goes beyond routine exercises and support groups. It is a manner of giving succour to COPD patients so that they look forward to their future confidently.