Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a condition that has a substantial detrimental impact on patients’ quality of life. Especially during the later stages of the disease, many people find themselves unable to complete daily tasks that they were once able to do without giving a second thought. For example, activities that were once fun and relaxing like going to the grocery store or cooking may feel more like a chore than anything else. This is often due to recurring symptoms like breathlessness, chest pain, and fatigue.
When you inhale and exhale, the air in your lungs and airways may create turbulence called respiratory sounds — also known as “lung sounds” or “breath sounds.” You may know these sounds as “coughing” and “wheezing” but there’s actually a lot more to these sounds than you might initially realize. Breathing sounds are not only used to help diagnose lung conditions like COPD, asthma, and pneumonia but they can be used to assist medical professionals in directing and prescribing medication for these lung diseases.
There’s nothing worse than waking up in the morning to symptoms like fatigue, stiffness, chest pain, or grogginess. However, this is a reality that many Americans face, especially those with pulmonary illnesses like COPD, pulmonary fibrosis, and asthma. According to Dispatch Health, fatigue is the second most common symptom of COPD behind dyspnea (shortness of breath). This study found that the amount of COPD patients with clinically significant fatigue is around 50%, in contrast to 10% in elderly people without COPD.
If you tuned into our blog earlier this month, you know that we discussed COPD as a “systemic disease.” In other words, it’s a disease that affects every part of the body, not just the lungs. This is an important distinction to make because it enables both patients and medical professionals to detect systemic manifestations earlier on and treat them more effectively. One of the systemic manifestations that we mentioned in this post is osteoporosis, a disease that affects the density of the bones.
For the majority of people, summer is the best time for being active. No matter what type of physical exercise you like to do, everything tends to be more enjoyable and productive when it’s done outside rather than inside. What’s more, studies have shown many health benefits to being outdoors including lowering blood pressure, reducing stress, and preventing insomnia, a sleep disorder that often results from a lack of sunlight during the day.
Mental illness is a growing problem in the United States. According to Mental Health America (MHA), 1.5 million more Americans experienced mental health issues in 2017 than the previous year. What’s more, surveys from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate a sharp increase in self-reported behavioral health symptoms since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. While there are many possible factors that are contributing to these issues, one of the lesser discussed factors is social isolation.