Posted 02 March, 2023
What is COPD? Know its Causes, Symptoms and Home remedies
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a lung disease which obstructs the breath which leads to difficulty in breathing. It can be well managed in the initial stage but ignoring it can also be fatal. The problem of shortness of breath (COPD) occurs due to many reasons like smoking, living in a polluted environment etc.
The lungs are usually very spongy. When we breathe in air, oxygen flows into the bloodstream and carbon dioxide is released but COPD disease interferes with this process. A person suffering from COPD has troubled breathing and oxygen does not reach his body in full quantity. Emphysema and chronic bronchitis are the two main factors that contribute to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Chronic bronchitis is a condition in which a person's bronchial tubes become inflamed. These trachea serve to carry air to the lungs. Apart from this, emphysema is such a condition, in which the sac of the lungs (bronchial) gradually starts getting destroyed gradually.
Symptoms of COPD
Following are the common symptoms of COPD-
- Rapid breathing.
- Being troubled by mucus for several months in a row.
- Persistent cough with mucus.
- Chest infection.
- Persistent sore throat.
- Chest tightness.
- Having a cold, flu, or other respiratory infection for several days.
Other symptoms of COPD are-
- Rapid weight loss.
- Feeling tired.
- Unbearable pain in the chest.
- Swelling and pain in the knees.
- Blood in the mucus while coughing.
Causes of COPD
- Excessive use of tobacco and smoking.
- Smoking cigars, cigarettes etc. even if you have asthma, Tuberculosis.
- Polluted environment i.e. smoke from factories and chulhas.
- Exposure to fumes from the burning of any kind of fuel.
- Exposure to dust and chemicals.
- Harmful odor emanating from chemicals used in pesticides and paints.
- Genetics i.e a family member has had lung-related problems in the past.
Prevention of COPD
- Avoid air pollution.
- Adopt a healthy lifestyle.
- Keep the weight under control.
- Don't smoke and avoid second-hand smoke.
- Avoid exposure to chemical fumes and dust in the workplace.
- Do pranayama and yoga regularly.
- Take medicines regularly for people with COPD.
Diagnosis of COPD
After knowing the symptoms of COPD, doctors request some physical examinations, which are as follows:
The patient's lungs are examined with a test called spirometry. Through this, the working capacity of the lungs of the person is determined. This test is conducted through a machine called a spirometer, in which the patient is asked to breathe. The obtained readings are then compared based on the age of the patient which shows obstruction of the airways of the body.
To test for COPD, doctors may order a chest X-ray. Through this, problems occurring in the lungs are determined, which exhibit symptoms like chest infection in a disease called COPD.
Many health conditions are detected through blood tests. In this, common symptoms of COPD such as iron deficiency in the blood (anemia) are checked.
Home remedies for COPD
COPD patients should drink lukewarm water. This loosens the phlegm which provides relief to the lungs.
Honey acts as a great antibiotic. Consuming honey mixed with lukewarm water helps to reduce the swelling due to which the chances of spreading infection in the body are reduced. Taking cinnamon with honey or jaggery thrice a day also provides relief.
Turmeric has antibacterial and antioxidant properties which work to relieve cough, asthma, bronchitis and colds. In such a situation, if there is a problem related to COPD, drink half a teaspoon of turmeric mixed in a glass of milk.
Tulsi has antioxidant properties which work to provide relief to the patients of COPD. In addition, Tulsi also increases immunity. For this, drinking ginger, honey and basil juice together stops the formation of phlegm.
Garlic has antibacterial properties which help in the treatment of COPD. In addition, garlic has antimicrobial properties that activate the immune system and protect against infection. For this, boil 3 to 4 cloves of garlic thoroughly in milk before sleeping every day. Now let this mixture cool and drink it.
Onion has also been used in traditional medicine for asthma, bronchitis due to its anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, anti-carcinogenic and antioxidant properties. All these properties help to relieve the infection. For this, roast the onion and consume it with honey or by mixing one spoon of honey in onion juice.
Coriander seeds boost the body's immune system to fight infections. For this, make coriander tea and give it to the patient twice a day.
Yoga and pranayama-
Yoga and Pranayama act like Sanjeevani Booti for COPD patients. Including it in daily routine helps to relieve the symptoms of COPD. Apart from this, doing pranayama in the early stage of COPD reduces the risk of increasing its severity. But keep in mind that before doing the below listed pranayama, consult a specialist. The following are some types of pranayama, which help to prevent or reduce the symptoms of COPD:
- Controlled breathing (Anulom-vilom).
- Skull shining breath (Kapalbhati).
- Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar) while chanting Om.
- Shoulder stand (Sarvangasana).
- Cobra pose (Bhujangasana).
- Lion pose (Simhasana).