Home Health Care near Jensen Beach, FL – What Do You Know About COPD?
COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a lung disease affecting the lives of more than 120,000 people in the United States each year. It’s usually a condition diagnosed in older adults. COPD is also referred to as chronic bronchitis or emphysema. This progressive lung disease makes it difficult for someone to breathe. The airways of the lungs become partially blocked and damaged, making the affected person struggle to breathe normally.
COPD is something which usually develops over time and the damage is irreversible. As it develops, a person may not have any idea because they are not noticing any symptoms. People who suffer from COPD tend to get out of breath easily. Doing any small task such as washing dishes, laundry, walking or getting dressed can leave a person with COPD gasping for air.
You may be wondering what happens to the airways to make it so difficult to breathe?
- Air sacs in the airways (tubes that help carry air in and out of the lungs) lose elasticity and become limp. When this happens, it is hard for air to get in and out.
- There are tiny walls that separate these air sacs in a healthy person but in someone who has COPD, those walls are destroyed.
- The area around the airways becomes swollen, making it hard for air to get in and out.
This lung disease is caused by several factors including:
- Smoking – this is the major cause of COPD. The longer a person continues to smoke tobacco, the higher chance they have of developing this lung disease. A person who is frequently exposed to second hand smoke is also in a high risk category.
- Environmental – Sometimes people who have spent years working in a factory and were exposed to various chemical fumes or other pulmonary irritants can be diagnosed with COPD.
- Genetics – Not very many people are born with this genetic condition called alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT). They may have never had significant exposure to smoke or harmful fumes, but develop the disease because of genetics.
For your elderly loved one with COPD, an in-home health care service can take care of her medical needs on a daily basis.
If you or an aging loved one are in need of home health care services near Jensen Beach, FL or the surrounding areas, contact the caring professionals at Treasure Coast Home Health Care. Call today: (772) 678-3324.