What to do during a flare-up of COPD

Flare-up’s can be a result of an infection or there can be no apparent cause. It is important to be aware of your plan of action for flare-ups, this can be discussed with your COPD doctor or nurse.  Having a flare-up plan is important and may consist of having different medication at home, such as steroids and antibiotics, to alleviate the additional symptoms.   

 

The British Lung Foundation have produced a useful guide of what to do when you experience a flare-up in symptoms.   

 

 

How to avoid a flare-up 

Follow any advice given to you by your COPD specialist when it comes to managing your symptoms.  It is important to be aware of what might trigger your symptoms and what can prevent an exacerbation of symptoms: 

  • Stop smoking 
  • Avoid contact with air pollutant such as dust 
  • Avoid contact with strong sprays or deodorants 
  • Be extra careful when pollen levels are high  
  • Avoid contact with strongly scented clothes detergent 
  • During the winter months, cover up your nose and mouth (where possible) as this is when the cold’s and flu’s are most common 
  • Try to stay hydrated 
  • Wash your hands frequency 
  • Ensure you receive all your yearly flu jabs  
  • Vacuum the house regularly to avoid build up of dust 
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet 

 

References 

https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/copd/flare-ups 

https://lunginstitute.com/blog/copd-exacerbation-guidelines-what-you-can-do/ 

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