Copd

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i was diagnosed with Copd in October I'm 54yrs  old and a smoker I'm finding it so hard to give up . The Dr. Said it was  moderate Copd  but since  being diagnosed I feel it's getting worse. I haven't slept properly in weeks because I wake up coughing and bring up a lot of phlegm . Can anyone give me advice on how to get a good night sleep many thanks 

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  • Posted

    Stop smoking!   It's the single best thing you can do, but it's your choice:  if you want your COPD to advance much faster and to die sooner, keep smoking.

    I say this as a former smoker who'd already given up when I was diagnosed with COPD, but decades too late ...... of course it's hard to give up, but how easy is to live with rapidly deteriorating COPD?   

    I rarely cough at night now after being prescribed Symbicort puffer about a year ago EXCEPT when I've been socialising around smokers or exposed to other pollution, but cigarette smoke is by far the worst thing for me.

    Many smokers managed to give up in the years before patches, gum, pills, e-cigarettes, hypnosis and so on were available and you can do it too:  what have you actually done to give up?

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    • Posted

      Jude is right, when I was diagnosed I gave up straight away, fear of what I was facing was enough. With my medication and the fact I dont smoke, I dont have many problems. The best thing you can do is stop smoking.
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    • Posted

      Absolutely Jude. It is so obvious. I smoked for fifty years until I had to give up or die. That was six years ago and, while hard to do - really hard - it was one of my best moves ever.
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    • Posted

      That's about how long I smoked too and I didn't even have COPD symptoms until about a year after I'd stopped, by which time it was of course too late.    I'd be changing "give up or die" to "give up or die sooner", because it's still going to get us!

      I'm still angry about the Quit campaign info which tells you that after a certain length of time off smokes your lungs will return to normal - not necessarily, but I was stupid enough to believe it.

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  • Posted

    Hi 21, TRY CARBOCISTERINE
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    • Posted

      Sorry for the short answer, wasn`t feeling too well, but the above I was prescribed to me to help my lung congestion. Just had 5 teeth extracted so my soreness and pain is receeding. So see your docter and sort out a Spirometry test and try for a pulmonary project.
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  • Posted

    Hi,

    Sorry to hear about you recent diagnosis and the difficulties you are having giving up smoking.  As I am sure everyone has told you it is the single most impoortant contribution you can make to your future health, but it isn't easy.  If you happen to be UK based there is a lot help out there, and you should ask your GP to enrol you on a pulmonary rehab' course.  There you will get tremendous support and professional advice.  Also contact you local British Lung Foundation (BLF) Breathe Easy group who also give a lot of support.  If not UK, mention your country of residence in your next post and you will be surprised at the respones you will get.

    Meanwhile, it could be possible be that your sleep problems are stress related due to your recent diagnosis.  Help and support may ease that problem.  Dicuss it openly with your Doctor and any other help (Practice nurse) that may be available.

    Take care of yourself, and remember you are not alone.

    Michael

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  • Posted

    Sorry to hear you have this diagnoses.

    Smoking IS difficult to give up but it is THE singular most important thing you must do...today.

    I cannot emphasize this enough. Do what you must. Use more than one method of smoking cessation at  time. Start with the nicotine patches, likely the 21 mg, and use this daily without fail for two or three months. Once you begin this patch STOP your smoking...immediately.

    At the same time, have some nicotine gum on hand for times of cravings and use it accordingly...you do not chew this gum like regular gum..you chew it a few times

    and then 'park' it alongside your gums.

    The physical addiction to smoking is gone in approximately two weeks, after that it is behavior modification.

    If you have a mobile phone, whereby you can get applications for it, there is a free app called "Smoke Free" (or one of the many others ones) they are VERY motivational and really help a lot.

    I smoked for 39 years and used the above to quit. It takes perseverance, and I kept trying repeatedly over the course of a few months and I did it. Five years now.

    You will NOT miss it once you are over the hump.

    Once you stop the inflammation in your lungs, and the production of phlegm should ease off and allow you a better sleep.

    Also be sure you are taking your inhalers properly. (hopefully you were prescribed inhalers) They are most important   to relieve symptoms.

    Another help to get rid of phlegm is making sure you drink enough water. This will help to thin the secretions so that you can cough up more and spit them out. There is a medication that is found in some products that helps with phlegm and you could ask your pharmacist about this. Guafenasine.

    A cough contol for the night would also be a help to allow sleep. You want to cough during the day to rid the phlegm,but if it is causing you sleep deprivation, that is not so great.

    Have you tried to position yourself at more of 45degree angle , so that your head it up a bit higher?

    Also, if you are having swelling in your feet,angles or legs please see you physician as this could indicate fluid retention which can also increase your cough, increase shortness of breath and make you breathing worse.

    It is VERY important you get adequate sleep. If this does not improve you really should go back for a ressessment....at least see  a nurse if you cannot get into the physician.

    Please write back and let us know how you are doing and any new developements.

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  • Posted

    ask your GP if you can have oxygen at night ,sorry you are suffering so bad, getting no sleep isn't nice either
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  • Posted

    Hi Twenty One

    Its easy to say it I know, but you must try and give up smoking. Sounds like you are a bit stressed, (understandable!!).  This is, (in part), probabaly one of the reasons you are not getting to much sleep. Its easy to say but try and relax, take some deep breaths if at all possible, try yoga, try anything that might get you to relax. If you are drinking things like coffee in the evening, try and cut down on that. Ifthe coughing is the problem, not only see your doctor to see if you are on the right prescription, also if the dosage is right. I don't know how you sleep in bed but try sleeping in a different position. try and raise your upper body slightly, this might help with the coughing.

    I hope you get a good night sleep soon.

    All the best and a Happy Christmas to you.

    Kev (UK)smile

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  • Posted

    Hi I was diagnosed with mild  copd 5 years ago at the age of 56.  I have been lucky so far as my FEV1 has risen slightly despite still smoking.  Some of my symptoms though are not mild ie breathlessness on exertion and low oxygen sats.  I am always told this is because of the smoking and stopping it would result in a big improvement in coughing and phlegm production.   My nurse said she would give me Mucodyne which would help with this but only if I stop smoking.  I am struggling with this as well,  but it does look like the only answer. 

    I am aware that smokers copd can progress quite a lot faster than non smokers,  so far I have been very lucky but I know it won't last.   So you and me both have to pack in the evil weed!  Not easy I know but it has to be done for the sake of our health.  x

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  • Posted

    Advice: listen to the Dr, get assistance to stop smoking, request a Pulmonasry Rehab course (learn about COPD, how to breath, how to keep well, what to do when problems begin etc), talk to Dr about Sleep Apnoea (probably not got it but worth checking).

    ​If you really can't stop smoking then away from cigarettes and smoke, try hard excercise; getting brealthless will NOT HARM YOU, it is good for you and gets the best out of what';s left of your lungs BUT, keep away from the cigs for 30 minutes before and after the exercise as smoking while the lungs are wide open WILL DO MASSIVE DAMAGE.

    ​You can't get better but you have the ability to slow down the rate that things get worse. In 4 years I have impoved by lung function from 53% to 61% so I know if can be done.

    If you can't stop the smoking then at least cut it down - every little helps!

    Good luck and breath easy!

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    • Posted

      Good advice EXCEPT i was told at rehab that people with COPD should definitely NOT continue whatever they're doing once they become breathless, because it puts a strain on already damaged lungs, which is far from being good for you.    We were taught to stop, do our breathing exercises and then continue when breathing was back to normal. 
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    • Posted

      That's not what I was taught at my PR.  I was told the optimum level to exercise was to be too breathless to sing but not to hold a conversation.  Any less than this and you are not getting the full benefit,  any more will not benefit you at all and is so stressful it might make you reluctant to do exercise.   It's called the Borg level of exercise - google it.  x
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    • Posted

      Well that's a more general appraoch I guess:  we were taught to assess our levels of discomfort on a scale of 1 - 10 and the stop whatever we were doing at level 3.    I wouldn't call still being able to hold a conversation "hard" exercise, which was the term I was responding to and I realise on re-reading my response that I didn't express myself clearly:  we weren't told to stop once we become breathless, only at a certain level f discomfort, the reason being that to go beyond that achieves nothing and it just takes longer to recover normal breathing..    
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    • Posted

      I was replying to y-not and basically agreeing with you Jude.   The scale we used was the Borg scale which goes from 1-10.  We were taught to find our level 4 (different for everyone) and not to go above or below that.   It was impressed on us our Borg 4 level was the ability to hold a conversation but too breathless to sing.  Any more or less than that and we don't reap the full benefits.  I would call that fairly hard exercise.
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