ABOUT THIS PROGRAM
Breathing problems can be frustrating, painful, and disruptive to your everyday activities, often preventing you from doing the things you love the most. For patients suffering from COPD, the debilitation can extend to preventing you from taking care of your family, your pets, and yourself. Our home health care providers aim to help you manage your condition, and reduce its symptoms, returning you to an optimum level of normal life. CHHS has initiated a COPD program to manage patients with this chronic disease in their place of residence. With adequate education, medication management and multi-disciplinary care, COPD patients can be provided with appropriate and timely interventions to prevent exacerbation of the disease process and costly readmissions to the hospital.
WHAT IS CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE (COPD)?
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a serious lung disease that makes it hard to breathe. It also makes your heart have to work harder. COPD symptoms get worse over time and never completely go away. There is no cure for COPD, but treatment will help control your symptoms and slow down worsening of the disease.
What is the cause?
COPD happens when your airways are damaged. The airways are the tubes and sacs that carry air in and out of your lungs. The damage is almost always caused by irritation of the lungs over many years. Cigarette smoking is the most common cause of irritation. Other causes are exposure to secondhand smoke, air pollution, chemical fumes, dust, and frequent lung infections.
There are 2 main types of COPD: chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
In chronic bronchitis, the insides of the airways thicken and swell, making the airways smaller and more easily blocked. Your lungs also have a lot of mucus that blocks air flow, making it hard to breathe. In emphysema, the air sacs in the lungs are damaged or destroyed and lose their ability to get bigger and smaller as air moves in and out. This makes it harder for the lungs to get oxygen into your blood when you breathe in. It’s also harder for your lungs to get rid of carbon dioxide when you breathe out.
CARE TIPS FOR COPD
- Work with your doctor. Don’t miss visits.
- Take your medicines. Take them the way your doctor tells you to.
- Quit smoking. Stay away from other people’s smoke.
- Avoid things that make your symptoms worse.
- Get your vaccines. Ask your doctor if u or pneumonia shots are right for you.
- Use your action plan. Follow the action steps if your symptoms get worse.
- Write things down that you will share with your doctor:
- How you feel each day?
- What makes your COPD worse?
- Questions to ask at your next visit.