It’s hard to hear that your elderly family member has COPD, especially if she’s never had lung issues in the past. Once you know for sure that she is dealing with COPD, though, there are some changes that she should think about making.
Get Some Baseline Testing Done
It’s important for your elderly family member to know what she’s dealing with and the best way to do that is to undergo simple baseline testing. Spirometry testing gives your senior a number that equates to how well she’s able to breathe and it’s something that her doctor may do several times per year in order to see how she’s doing. It’s a simple test that involves blowing air into a tube. If your elderly family member is prone to lung illnesses, her doctor may want to x-ray her lungs periodically.
Talk to Her Doctor about Pulmonary Rehab
Another option might be to try pulmonary rehabilitation. This is a type of physical therapy that combines education about lung issues and breathing. Your senior may learn a lot more about how her lungs function, how to deal with shortness of breath, and what she can do to help her lungs to be as strong as possible. She’ll also learn how to exercise in a way that protects her lungs.
Talk to Her Doctor about Smoking
If your elderly family member is a smoker at all, now is the time to quit. COPD isn’t always caused by smoking, but a high percentage of smokers do eventually develop COPD. Quitting as soon as possible gives your senior’s lungs a chance to heal at least a little bit and may extend her life by a few years. There are a variety of tools available that can help her to quit.
Pay Attention to Even Small Symptoms
The smallest symptoms tend to be ignored or explained differently, even if your senior has COPD. The problem is that your elderly family member’s lungs are more vulnerable now. If she’s experiencing tightness in her chest when she’s breathing, that could be a beginning sign of a lung infection. Dealing with that now rather than waiting could make a huge difference for her overall health.
Your elderly family member may start to realize very quickly that some tasks are more difficult for her now that she’s got COPD. Having someone else there to take over some of the daily household chores or other tasks that have become too much might be helpful. Senior care providers can also help her to remember to take it easy when she’s shorter of breath.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care Services in Thomasville PA, please talk to us. Our friendly staff can answer all of your questions. In-home Senior Care in Adams and York Counties, PA. Call Today: (717) 698-8258.
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