Did you know that nearly 37 million Americans live with a chronic lung disease like asthma and COPD, emphysema and chronic bronchitis? That is why it is so important to stay active, breath deep, toss those cigarettes and remember to laugh! We’ve all heard that laughter is the best medicine and in lung health, it’s true! Laughter helps to get rid of stale air so that more oxygen can enter. Not only that, but, it release peptides that lower stress and help with pain management. At VRI, we’re here to help, even if that help is to tell you a funny joke.
- Toss the cigarettes: Over time cigarette smoke destroys lung tissue and may trigger changes that grow into cancer. If you smoke, it’s never too late to benefit from quitting.
- Minimize exposure to pollution: Secondhand smoke, chemicals in the home and workplace, and radon all can cause or worsen lung disease. Make your home and car smoke free. Test your home for radon. Avoid exercising outdoors on bad air days.
- Stay Active: Aerobic exercise provides the best workout for your lungs. The more you exercise, the more efficient your lungs become. Creating strong, healthy lungs through exercise helps you to better resist aging and disease. Even if you do develop lung disease down the road, exercise helps to slow the progression and keeps you active longer.
- Breathe deep into your diaphragm: Deep breathing helps clear the lungs and creates a full oxygen exchange. Breathing exercises can make your lungs more efficient. As you inhale count 1-2-3-4. Then as you exhale, count 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8. Shallow breaths come from the chest, and deeper breaths come from the belly, where your diaphragm sits. Be aware of your belly rising and falling as you practice. When you do these exercises, you may also find you feel less stressed and more relaxed.
- Prevent infections: A cold or other respiratory infection can sometimes become very serious. Wash your hands often with soap and water. Avoids crowds during the cold and flu season and remember to get your flu vaccine every year!
- Sit up tall: Since the lungs are soft structures, they only take up the room that you make for them. Lean back slightly in a stable chair, lift your chest and open the front of your body as you breathe deeply.
- Stay hydrated: Getting enough water is as important for the lungs as it is for the rest of the body. Staying well hydrated helps keep the mucosal linings in the lungs thin. This thinner lining helps the lungs function better.
- Laugh!: Laughter helps to get rid of stale air so that more oxygen can enter. Not only that, but, it release peptides that lower stress and help with pain management.