6 Tips for Managing Bronchiectasis

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with bronchiectasisthere are ways you can help slow down the progression of the disease and improve your quality of life. We’ve put together a list of tips to help improve your life with bronchiectasis using information from the National Institute of Health.

Avoid Lung Infections

Speak to your doctor about getting annual vaccinations against flu and pneumonia, and avoid spending time with people who are sick with colds, coughs, and the flu. Get into good hygiene habits to avoid picking up bacteria and germs.

Read 10 tips to help you get through cold and flu season.

 

Stop Smoking

Smoking will only speed up the progression of bronchiectasis. If you’re struggling to quit smoking on your own, speak to your healthcare team for advice and practical help.

Characteristics of bronchiectasis patients differ depending on the underlying cause. Find out more. 

 

Avoid Lung Irritants

Where possible, avoid being in environments with secondhand smoke, pollution, chemical fumes, dust particles and other substances which may be harmful to lungs.

Find out more about the six known causes of bronchiectasis.

 

Eat a Healthy Diet

Eat a healthy balanced diet with less processed foods and more whole foods. Avoid excessive salt, sugar and saturated fat and eat plenty of fiber in the form of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains. Aim to bring your weight to an acceptable level.

Study reveals the risk factors identified for bronchiectasis in COPD patients. Read more here.

 

Exercise

Regular exercise will improve overall health and also help to loosen mucus in the lungs. Gentle exercise such as swimming and walking are ideal for patients with bronchiectasis.

Discover eight interesting facts about the lungs.

 

Get Support

Having a chronic lung disease can be frightening and you may not know who to turn to for advice. Support groups, either local or online, can offer guidance and reassurance for patients, as well as an environment to share experiences.

Speak to your healthcare team if you’re suffering from anxiety or depression as this will need to be treated alongside your bronchiectasis.

Find out more about the pathology of bronchiectasis.

Bronchiectasis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

 

15 comments

  1. John White says:

    I have had bronchiectasis affecting 50% of both lungs all my life exacerbation always follows after spending time in doctors and physio waiting area’s and any crowds as well as shops and public transport where bacteria is spread by other sick people. The result to me means being confined to my bed with breathlessness, rhinitis and lungs filling with infected mucus also a two week antibiotic course that will fail to respond if used too often. Walking near the sea as often as I can is the very best exercise but the group physio with other sufferers is a problem.

    • Madeline Boudreau says:

      I would love to talk to some one who has bronchiectasis..I was just diagnosed 2 weeks ago,,,very devastating,,

      • Imelda sheriff says:

        Hi I have bronchiectasis for 2 year’s don’t go out much because of the coughing,shortness of breath pain in my chest I have 3 inhaler but don’t do a lot for me, today 3rd of October I am in bed not feeling good same as yesterday had two chest infection in to months,

      • Chloe says:

        Hi Madeline. I too have bronc. I was on a regiment of antibiotics for 18 months. Many pills but made sure I took them. I feel much better now and am off meds. Dr says I should be good for about 15 years.

      • Dee Burk says:

        Hi Madeline! I too was just diagnosed with brochiectasis and have been depressed and discouraged with lack of definitive answers. My case is mild but CT scan does show mucous plugs. Terrible cough that has cause 2 fractured ribs.

      • Gillian Allison says:

        i have been diagnosed over. the last few weeks and i must say i am frightened, night time and early morning is the worst time for me i cannot breath properly and it terrifies me

      • Rodolfo says:

        I been lung sick aince I was 7 yrs. old. Diagnosticated Broncho… like 20 yrs. ago.
        I’m 61, having an almost normal life, cannot dive but I do long walks and some light sports.
        Surprised that I know my grandsons, Happy with my life.
        Goog luck!

    • Mel sheriff says:

      Hi John my name is mel i have bronchiectasis for about 2 year’s i don’t go out no more with all the coughing people look and make remarks,I have 3 inhaler but don’t seem to do nothing, in bed at the moment not feeling to good.

  2. Alison says:

    Hi Cliff,
    I too have bronchiectasis. Diagnosed 18 months ago. Just recovered from a two week bout of infection, hot on the heals of previous one in October.
    I worry that I will loose my job as I sometimes cough quite a bit at work. However, I’m currently on an international drug trial for Bronchiectasis, hoping that this new drug will lead to better treatment for sufferers like us in the future. In the meantime I would love to know more about the “postural” breathing that you do.

  3. John says:

    I use a Himalayan salt pipe, as the name implies, it is a form of inhaler filled with Himalayan pink salt, which is a purer form of salt. It has anti bacterial properties which help to prevent the mucus from becoming infected. Can be purchased cheaply online from eBay, Amazon etc. I use it in conjunction with breathing excercises, e.g. Lie on a
    pillow, take eight breaths followed by 4 very deep breaths, then 5 or ten minutes just breathing the salt in. Repeat as necessary according to your schedule.

  4. Bean says:

    Hi all,
    I’m another bronchiectasis sufferer. I am 63. Diagnosed about 18 months ago, I’ve been ok until recently. I have a dog and walk about 5 miles per day. This helps. I also do breathing exercises as instructed by a physio. These are simple,if a little tiring. First one is to breathe in as deeply as possible three times. Then again breathe deeply, but hold it in for 15 seconds, again 3 three times I would advise you to try it if you can. When I started these, I could only hold my breath for about 5 seconds. Thes exercises make your lungs and tubes more elastic, less stiff, thus allowing air to go through the system easier. It won’t cure me, but will result in a better lifestyle. I do it at least 3 times per day.Good luck to all!

  5. vr says:

    Hi,
    I have bronchiectasis for all my life. I didn’t even know that I have bronchiectasis until the age of 27. When I learned that this is bronchiectasis and not reversible.

    I tried to stay active and I started run, I did my first marathon at 35, I keep doing half marathons and Marathons. I run 4 miles alternative days. Now I am 44, never been in doctors office for last 10 years.

    I cleaned up my mucus in the afternoon and evening, mostly happening before my lunch and dinner time.

    It is very uncomfortable but god gave to get through it.

  6. IDA DICK says:

    vr, how did you clean up your mucus? I was diagnosed two weeks ago and think I am going to the wrong pulmonolgist. I think what I have is mild, don’t really know. trying to do what I can to stay in good physical form. thx.id

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