When you have a disability or chronic illness, one of the most important things you can do is to learn as much as you can about it. The more you know, the easier it should be to get a handle on those days when you feel like it is a constant battle and you are not sure you are winning.
Knowing the language or words that go with COPD/Asthma is a great way to start or to continue to refresh a person’s knowledge of the ins and outs of the lifelong health companion which we are dealing with.
With that, we discuss some of what we call ‘must know words’ of life with COPD/Asthma – and today we will discuss briefly the importance of knowing the word(s) ‘Controlled Coughing’.
What is ‘Controlled Coughing’?
Controlled Coughing is a technique that helps clear the airways of mucus, but saves energy and oxygen by using only the force needed to loosen and move the mucus. COPD/Asthma patients learn the controlled coughing technique in pulmonary rehabilitation programs.
Many times, when you have COPD, the disease itself can cause your lungs to produce excess mucus which leads to frequent coughing. Not all coughs will be effective in clearing excess mucus from your lungs and explosive or uncontrolled coughing causes airways to collapse and spasm, which traps mucus.
With the controlled or effective cough, it comes from deep within the lungs and will have just the right amount of force to loosen and carry mucus through the airways, and do it without causing the airways to narrow or collapse. When controlled coughing saves energy, the person also saves oxygen.
The effective cough should have similar steps like the following:
- Sit on a chair or on the edge of your bed, with both feet on the floor. Lean slightly forward and relax.
- Fold your arms across your abdomen and breathe in slowly through your nose. (The power of the cough comes from moving air.)
- To exhale you should lean forward, pressing your arms against your abdomen. You should then cough 2-3 times through a slightly open mouth, while keeping the coughs short and sharp.
One thing to note is that the first cough loosens the mucus and moves it through your airways, while the second and third cough should enable you to cough the mucus up and out.
- At this point you should breathe in again by ‘sniffing’ slowly and gently through your nose. Doing this gentle breath should help prevent mucus from moving back down your airways.
- Perform again as needed.
Some tips to follow along with the controlled breathing process would be:
Be sure to avoid breathing in quickly and deeply through your mouth after coughing, as quick breaths will interfere with the movement process of mucus coming up and out of the lungs. Plus, the quick breathing can cause a problem with uncontrolled coughing.
Unless your physician has advised you to watch your fluid intake, it is advisable to drink at least six to eight glasses of fluid per day, as this will help keep your mucus thinned out which in turn will make coughing much easier.
You should consider using the controlled coughing technique after you use your bronchodilator medications or most likely any time you feel as if you’re are having a problem with mucus or congestion.
With that, we always like to ask a QUESTION OF OUR READERS, and today we ask, “Have you heard of and used the controlled cough techniques and if you have, did you find the process helpful?
As always – if you or anyone you know have any symptoms involving lung and breathing functionality, and they linger over and over while disrupting a lifestyle – then please ask questions and get it checked out.
Remember – ‘a person without good breathing, is a person without a good life’, so let’s do what we can, to learn what we can, to improve what we can.
With that I bid to all – smiles, prayers, blessings and steady breathing – Mr. William.
(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer, reprinting or reuse of this article is restricted without written permission.)
NOTE TO REMEMBER: We only give descriptions and highlights of various aspects of having COPD and/or asthma and no way do we ever want our information to be considered medical treatment type of information, always consult your physician for more, clearer and more medical founded information.
Know that you can follow all the writings by CrossDove Writer pertaining to COPD/Asthma by following at wheezingaway.com or on Facebook at COPD Travels.
(Information gathered from various books and internet sources discussing COPD, Asthma and other lung diseases)