any tips for easier breathing

hi everyone, Ive not writen a post before but i do read a lot of yours (just that has given me support). But after my latest diagnosis Im not sure what I can do to help myself.

I had bad pneumonia in September for two months, (it really scared me and i immediatly quit smoking) as i was recovering they sent me to a specialist who said i had late onset asthma although he thought i was young for this at 36. he gave me a brown and blu inhaler, he sent me for tests and it came back that i had allergies (which they cant test for) and 'sensative airways' so they are keeping me on the inhalers.

so my problem now is this, i still cough at times, but i dont know if this is due to still recovering from pneumonia, stopping smoking, or the allergies. is there anything that you lot do that help with the breathlessness and coughing.

i also wake up alot, so where do you feel you sleep better, a dry warm room? an open window?

I also wanted to know what excerise everyone prefers, i dont like swimming but i need to start building up my fitness levels, before i was ill i could walk for hours, but now getting to the top of the stairs is a journey ha,

sorry to ask so many questions, iv found it all to be quite overwhelming, but iv gone from never being still, to never wanting to get out of bed lol so just any tips to easier breathing would be great xx

23 Replies

  • Hello Moza.

    I am so glad you decided to post. I am very sorry to hear you've been poorly and for so long.

    Congratulations on giving up smoking. I hear it is no easy task. But I am certain the benefits to you will be very great.

    I don't usually cough unless I have a cold. Or there is an irritant like dust or pollen about. I have an air filter in my room that helps with dust and pollen. I think it helps a lot. I try and vacuum my room often as well. I also have a dog. His fur obviously is not great for my lungs so I make sure I hoover as much as possible.

    If my room is too dry my throat gets sore and thickly. I have a humidifier in winter since the heating is on and a dehumidifier in summer because summers in Japan can be very humid and humidity doesn't help my breathing at all. I've found I just have to adjust my environment the best I can to suit me. Waking up a lot has always been a problem. I'm not sure how to counter that except to get back to sleep as soon as possible.

    I used to swim before I got ill. Now my main way to exercise is walking. My doctor doesn't recommend swimming as he pointed out the pool and the communal changing rooms may not be the best for me as I may catch something. Also, I don't think I could swim a lap even anymore. So, I walk as much as I can. Talking about stairs, they are torture for me. So I have moved to the ground floor.

    If anything, learning to take my time has been the hardest thing. Like you, I was someone who could never be still. I have had to literally change my mindset and learn to allow myself to be as slow as I want and adapt to the best pace that will keep my breathlessness as in check as possible.

    Hang in there and come here often. It really helps. I hope you will let us know how you go.

    Much love to you,

    Cas xx 🌹

  • Caspiana what a brilliant,up beat reply you sent to dear@moza. You gave terrific examples of how you have adapted your life so as to accommodate your illness etc. I'm sure it will be read as a positive outlook and that we ourselves can help our conditions, just with a few simple adjustments. Hope you and Chom are doing well and looking forward to a Happy New Year! Lots of love, SH.

  • has my reply disappeared?? i thought she gave me some great insights, im really disappointed its gone!!??

  • Oh thank you SH. It's very kind of you to say that. I hope you have a good New Year too. Much love to you. xx

  • hi cas, i think an air filter may help me too, so im going to try that. also thank you for mentioning the vacuum, I dont usually vacuum my bedroom as much as do in my living room, so i will for sure do this more.

    i think i will start to walk more, this will be good for me i think, and yes you are right its making the right adjustments that i need to do now,

    thankyou your words are very reassuring and its nice to know there is improvements i can now try xx

  • Sending you a huge hug Moza. Have a lovely New Year's. xx 💜

  • all the best to you too xx

  • Hi

    Can you be referred to a pulmonary rehablitation course, one hour exercise and one hour education

    Apart from the exercise they can discuss any other concerns you may have,

    For allergies have a read.

    There is breathing exercises which you will learn at pulmonary rehablitation,

    Pushed lip breathing.

    Diaphragm breathing.

    Sleeping habits and home environment is trial and error, because we are all different, what suits one may not suit you.

  • I do have an appointment due with the specialist sometime in the new year, it should have been sooner, but I had the ct scan, the lung function test and loads of other appointments so close to christmas they put it on hold. But I will ask him about the rehab course.

    thanks for the link too, i shall have a read. (google hasnt helped when ive tried searching myself, im usually dying by the third article i read lol)

    thank you stone xx

  • yes I went on one EXCELLANT

  • Hi Moza-x, and welcome. Ask whatever you like, that's what the group is all about! Here's a link to a good website which shows you some techniques to help you breathe more easily in various scenarios Lots of people here seem to find pursed lip breathing helps. You can do it with the breathing control one if you're having real trouble.

    If you had severe pneumonia in Sept, it might be a while yet before you feel back to your usual self. Severe pneumonia really knocks you for 6, we're talking many months of feeling weak & tired. I expect your airways are still inflamed & irritated too, so the slightest thing sets you off coughing. Definitely keep up the inhalers - in fact you might need a higher dose of the brown one to help reduce the inflammation more. Perhaps ask your doctor?

    I prefer a warm bed in a cool room. But my house is very draughty so if it's really cold I've left the heating on low all night before now. But that dries the air out too much!

    I exercise by walking & also an exercise bike. When convalescing, I try to push myself to do a little more each day, but it's a fine balance between getting fit & overdoing it. Lying in bed, your muscles weaken very easily, so arm & leg exercises are good. You can get cheap wrist & ankle weights, with velcro straps.

    Well done on stopping smoking, that's a huge achievement & the best present for your lungs :)

  • thank you i am really pleased i stopped smoking (cold turkey too!) i was a heavy smoker and it really scared me being so ill... its a shame it took something like that to get me to stop but hey ho, it is what it is

    i will deffo start walking more and i do like the idea of an excerise bike, (i could treat myself in the jan sales with the ciggy money lol)

    i will ask about the inhalers on my next visit xx thanks again xx

  • Hi nice to meet you. I can't add to the great advice you have already been given, but just wanted to say late onset asthma is quite common especially in smokers. I was diagnosed with it in my early 30's not caused by smoking the doctor said but triggered off by it. It is usually controllable with inhalers. x

  • ahh right, well I think I'm still in denial if I'm honest. when i got the diagnosis i thought "nah, he's got it wrong" but things do add up the more i read, esp on here. it reassuring to hear someone else has late onset asthma, when i went to clinic most people i spoke to had copd and were alot older than me (like over 75), so i couldn't really relate (but i was convinced at the time that i was going to leave the building with no further illness')

    i must admit i forgot to use the brown inhaler for two days, just because it isn't a habit yet and i did notice i got worse, so they do help for sure

    thanks coughalot xx

  • Hi, Moza. May I suggest you compile a symptoms and activity diary, nothing complicated, just 4 columns: date & time, activity, food and drink, symptoms. This may help you spot a pattern to start identifying an allergy.

  • that's a great idea, i will do that. that's probably my biggest problem i dont know what triggers it, so this will really help. fingers crossed xx thanks ergendl xx

  • You are very welcome moza-x-. If it is your standard asthma it's not too serious. Your symptoms will be controlled by the inhalers and you can lead a normal life. Make a good habit to remember to take your inhalers at the same time every day and you will be fine.

    It's good you have stopped smoking coz I didn't which led on to copd later on. But having said that even that at it's mild stage (which I am) is not too onerous and you can still lead a long and healthy life with it at that level. None of this is by any means a death sentence (despite what you will read on the internet), it's just a chronic condition which you will learn to manage.

    Some on here have been diagnosed with copd in their 40's though usually it's 50's and later. I always say that if I had to have any lung disease I would much rather asthma and copd than some of the much more serious ones you will see on here.

    Make a plan to look after your lungs and take your inhalers and any meds you might need. Learn to take your lungs seriously and deal with any infections etc. very quickly. x

  • i will deffo take more care of my lungs now, the pneumonia stemmed from having three chest infections in a row (or the same infection never really left me) i was ill with them all august and got the pneumonia in sept, I didnt bother going to the doctors properly with the chest infection, i wont make that mistake now..

    im still confused as to weather i was already getting late onset asthma before the pneumonia coz i was always getting chest infections, at least one, if not more a year or weather that has damaged my lungs and caused it... im going to ask this when i next see someone x

    im not going to search google anymore, like you say it gives you a death sentence haha but it did help me find everyone here, so every cloud... xx

  • Hi, welcome to the forum.

    I had late onset asthma too but really, looking back I know I had it since childhood. A very fit non-smoker so lasted to my late forties. It's a bugger for sure having to change your life but the more seriously you take it the better will be you lungs and the rest of your life.

    There's lots to learn about keeping well. As Hanne says, it can take three months to get back from several infections and pneumonia.

    Take your time, build your strength slowly & gently - also your immune system which will be wiped out by now. Avoid people with bugs for a while (quite difficult but you don't want to go down again whilst you're still so vulnerable).

    In answer to your questions, we're all different but usually extremes of temperature tighten the airways. I absolutely always get a sore throat leading to an infection when I leave the window open at night. Dampness is a killer. . . . I also find that steam from the hot shower or kettle helps when I'm coughing or have SOB - shortness of breath - but others find steam an irritant. Trial and error.

    Learning to breath in through the nose and out through the mouth whilst out in the cold helps - the air warms before it hits the airways. Pursed lip breathing when SOB & going upstairs/hills.

    It's vital you take your inhalers properly - look for demonstrations on YouTube for yours - in fact YouTube is great for many things including breathing techniques.

    The best of luck to you fir the future and well done you for Quitting the cigs - you'll smell lovely too 😜

    PS you'll probably have allergy tests once you get to the consultant. Mine is mould fortunately so the dog can stay and the house can stay dusty-ish!

  • i never thought to check you tube, great idea x, iv been trying to avoid anyone with bugs, which is everyone at this time of year haha, but so far so good,

    thanks, iv tried the steam, it hurt my chest. although this was when i still had the pneumonia so i may try it again

    thankyou and yes, its funny how as a smoker i couldnt smell that horrible ciggy smell but now phew-eee its bad lol

  • you know, i've just been thinking. I wonder if I've always had asthma. Ive always had a cough, when i was younger we had a coal fire so i would put it down to that, then as a was older i put it down to smoking, im going to ask mum when i see her

    I had the allergy test, it came back that my blood showed i was allergic to something but nothing that they can test for.. im going to do a diary like ergendl said see if i can see a pattern.. i dont have pets but we've moved near to a woods (literally i open my gate to woodlands) so i got a feeling its something out there maybe.... or maybe its my fella, he irritates me haha

  • Well as long as you are not allergic to him..... :) x

  • Hahaha, perhaps it IS him !

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