Did you know that cold air can worsen your Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) symptoms?
When cold air (especially cold, dry air) enters the lungs it can cause the airways to constrict, resulting in shortness of breath and flare-ups of COPD symptoms. The good news is that these effects can be avoided by checking the weather forecast and planning ahead. If you need to go out into the cold weather, here are some tips that may help.
- Check weather conditions before going outside and dress appropriately for the weather.
- Use a scarf or facemask to cover your mouth and nose when you are outside – this helps to warm and humidify the air before it enters your lungs.
- If you use oxygen, keep your oxygen hose under your coat to keep the air as warm as possible.
- Exercise indoors.
- Get your seasonal flu shot and practice proper hand-washing to avoid getting sick and worsening your symptoms.
SOURCE: COPD Foundation