Did you know that COPD is the third leading cause of death in the United States? COPD affects more than 24 million people across the United States.
What is COPD?
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease also known as COPD is a chronic lung disease that makes it hard for the patient or individual to breathe. Even though this lung disease is chronic it is often preventable and treatable. COPD can damage the airways of your lungs and as a result lead to shortness of breath. This chronic lung disease can affect your daily activities such as being at work, exercising, school, and your sleeping.
Common Symptoms for COPD:
• Chronic cough
• Shortness of breath
• Frequent respiratory infections
Main causes of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease are:
About 85 to 90 percent of all COPD cases are caused by cigarette smoking. The toxins in a cigarette smoke weakens an individual’s lung defense system against infections. This can result in swelling in your air tubes and destroy your air sacs.
Alpha-1 is a protein produced in the liver that is sent to the bloodstream, which is used to protect the lungs.Deficiency in this type of protein can result in damage to the liver and lungs. About 1 percent of those with COPD are diagnosed with the Alpha-1 deficiency.
Long-term exposure to air pollution, secondhand smoke, dust, fumes and chemicals often presented in your work environment or neighborhood. There are some environmental factors that you cannot control, but can try to avoid as much as possible.
Risk Factors for COPD
• Breathing secondhand smoke
• Exposure to air pollution
• A childhood respiratory infection
• Stop smoking if you're a smoker
• Learn your rights about smoke free environments at work and in public places
• Knowing your family history and being aware of the symptoms
• Protect yourself against chemicals, dust and fumes in your work environment.
Make a difference and educate others about COPD awareness month, and help save lives today.