Managing Your Emotions and COPD

While it’s possible to live an enjoyable life with COPD, it isn’t always easy. This chronic lung disease, which includes bronchitis and emphysema, can be challenging for both patients and loved ones, and it’s common to feel an array of emotions.

As a patient or loved one of someone living with COPD, you may feel depressed, sad, anxious, nervous, angry, grief, guilt, regret or frustration. These are natural feelings, and just like COPD, they do not have to control you. Here are a few tips to deal with the emotions that come with COPD:

Have a support system.

Even just one person can help you relieve some of the stress.

Ask for help.

Friends and family will want to help you, but often don’t know what to ask. Reaching out for their support creates a strong connection between you and your loved ones.

Talk to your doctor.

Let them know how you are feeling and managing the stress of a chronic disease. They may recommend that you see a counselor or therapist.

Look into palliative care.

Work with a palliative care team.

Find a support group.

Join a support group whether online or in-person.

Write in a journal.

Use a diary or journal to record your feelings.

Focus on nutrition.

Make sure to get plenty of exercise and proper nutrition.

Depression is common in COPD patients, and if you are concerned that you may be depressed, it’s important to speak with your doctor.

For caregivers, sometimes, they best thing you can do is listen. You won’t be able to solve all of your loved one’s problems, but they may just need someone to talk to. If you believe the patient may be a danger to themselves, contact a doctor immediately.

To learn more about COPD and how to manage the disease, visit Lung.org/COPD.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The COPD.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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