Pulmonary fibrosis (PF) is a chronic disease with progressive worsening of symptoms. There are many issues that a person living with pulmonary fibrosis needs to consider, including lifestyle, coping with breathlessness, traveling, and emotional issues.

Lifestyle

Lifestyle changes may make living with PF easier. There are a number of things people living with pulmonary fibrosis can do to maintain or improve their quality of life, including doing some gentle exercise, adopting a healthy diet, resting as necessary, quitting smoking, using relaxation techniques to reduce stress, joining a support group, getting help from healthcare professionals, and adopting a positive attitude.

Coping with breathlessness

Breathlessness can be a frightening symptom of pulmonary fibrosis. There are several ways to manage breathlessness in PF, including adopting a healthy diet and joining a pulmonary rehabilitation program. Relaxation techniques such as meditation may also help in relaxing tensed breathing muscles. In more severe cases, oxygen therapy may be useful and necessary.

Traveling

People with pulmonary fibrosis should avoid air travel whenever possible because it may worsen symptoms. High altitudes should also be avoided due to low oxygen levels.

Emotional issues and support

Over time, patients with PF may develop emotional problems such as fear, anxiety, stress, or depression. Talking with a healthcare team or a professional counselor may help manage these issues. Interaction with other patients via support groups, such as the Better Breathers Club and Living with Pulmonary Fibrosis, may help patients cope with the condition. Family and friends can also help relieve stress. Read more about emotional issues and support in pulmonary fibrosis.

Note: Pulmonary Fibrosis News 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 other 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.

Özge has a MSc. in Molecular Genetics from the University of Leicester and a PhD in Developmental Biology from Queen Mary University of London. She worked as a Post-doctoral Research Associate at the University of Leicester for six years in the field of Behavioural Neurology before moving into science communication. She worked as the Research Communication Officer at a London based charity for almost two years.
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Patrícia holds her PhD in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases from the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. She has studied Applied Biology at Universidade do Minho and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon, Portugal. Her work has been focused on molecular genetic traits of infectious agents such as viruses and parasites.
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Özge has a MSc. in Molecular Genetics from the University of Leicester and a PhD in Developmental Biology from Queen Mary University of London. She worked as a Post-doctoral Research Associate at the University of Leicester for six years in the field of Behavioural Neurology before moving into science communication. She worked as the Research Communication Officer at a London based charity for almost two years.
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