British Lung Foundation
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Lung/Airway Clearance (also known as moving the mucus)

Lung/Airway Clearance (also known as moving the mucus)

It would be interesting to learn from others the little things you do to make moving mucus easier.

I do a Lung/Airway clearance EVERY morning

Some of the things I do are as follows.

1/ Have a warm/hot cup of lemon & ginger tea bag with a tea spoon of honey.

2/ Walk from my front door to my back door very slowly for 5 mins

3/ Have 2 puffs of ventalin. Wait 10 mins then...

4/ Have Symbicort 400/12 Puffer x2. Wait 5 mins...

5/ Do a breathing ritual as follows:-

....Breath in for the count of 4 breath out for the count of 4 (make a whoosh sound when breathing out) 10 times.

....Breath in for the count of 4 breath out for the count of 8 (Out with pursed lips) 10 times

6/ Then Huff and Cough

That works about 99% of the time.


4/ Drink at least 2 litres of water each day.

5/ Minimise dairy foods.

6/ Maximise Fruit and Veges intake,

Pic above is very helpful too.

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21 Replies

Wise advice.

Thanks Pentreath. ;)

Hi Gerald, sounds like a good routine to me. Breathing routine is very similar to mine. As far as the foods go- with the gunk produced in bronchiectasis I have found over my lifetime that the type of food makes no difference. Of course, the healthy options have more nutrients which we need. Persuading myself to eat anything is my problem. Well done and thanks for giving everybody your advice.


Thanks Stillstanding63

Nice routine Gerold. I don't really do anything. Don't really have a mucus problem. I have been reading about pineapple juice for coughing and loosening mucus. Says it works better than cough medicine. Worth checking out. Good post. You should get some interesting replies.

Rubyxx 😊

Ruby I do it everyday even if I don't need to. It really opens my lungs and cleans out my airways early. Its a sort of Lung Exercise as well.

Great post Gerald - now to just convince Pete that he needs to stop eating cake etc. No easy task but worth a try. Pete takes Mucoclear twice a day and that helps bring the nasty stuff up but he can still have problems.

Hope you are well and thanks again. xxx

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Everything in moderation sassy. I still indulge, but when I do, I really do feel it. I have this fetish for donuts.


Interesting post Gerald. I agree with Stillstanding re nutrition. Many bronchs make copious amounts of gunk in any event.

My routine is twice a day

Neb a bronchodilator - neb hypertonic saline - do lung clearance (postural draining with percussion works well for me, but I also incorporate autogenic, acapella - whatever works at the time). We all do what works for us. For 28 days on following lung clearance I neb Tobramycin antibiotic.

When I forgot my needle and sringe recentlhy I think the baby doctor I saw was quite surprised at the heavy maintenance burdon we have.

Excercise (mine is gardening and walking, although I am on the lookout for a rescue dog to walk on a more regular basis).

Keep up fluid intake.

Get enough sleep.

Never stay in bed when ill with lungs 'cos I just get more congested.

Enjoy stuff inbetween lung stuff, arth and IBS.

You're right Gerald - moderation.

love cx

Thanks for that cofdrop, especially "Never stay in bed when ill with lungs 'cos I just get more congested." Its so easy to just lay there and that just makes things so much worse. xx

Interesting post Gerald, I also do the Lung/Airways clearance when I need to , was taught this at Pulmonary Rehab , it can be quite effective. Recently started an exercise class and noticed I am coughing up mucous a while after I finish the exercises , must admit I feel better for it. Talking about pineapple , my mother eats it every day as she had a problem swallowing food and would choke and always ended up in hospital. One day a nurse gave mum some pineapple to chew and it dislodged the food stuck in her throat ! This makes sense to me as I know pineapple was used to marinate cheap cuts of meat during the second world war to break down the tough fibres in the meat and make it easier to chew. My mother has not had another choking episode in 3 years, so pineapple seems to be working for her. Another thing I do to loosen up mucus is to have some chicken soup , that always livens things up ha! Noticed Bananas are on your list that creates mucus , I eat them every day, I love them! will keep off them for a while and see if it makes any difference. Tina.

Great ideas Tina. I love Pineapple but it gives me terrible acid tummy. Cheers. xxx

Typical how all the "nice" food is a no, no? Not that it would stop me, I eat whatever I fancy and stuff the consequences. lol


Don't quite know how to respond to that??????? :)

No response needed.


Hi, I have bronchectasis and my problem is far too much mucus sometimes hours of the stuff why do I make so much I've tried changing diets etc no one seems to know grrr I've made many a post of this horrid problem getting desperately scared now !! Xx carol

Carolg. It may be something totally unrelated to your current condition. I think you need to take this up with your GP. Gerald xx

Thanks Gerald, I intend to have a better chat with my consultant on my next visit if he's got the time to listen !! Take care carol

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Thank u I didn't know certain foods can aggravate my symptoms.

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