World COPD Day is marked every year on November 20. This day raises awareness about the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and to improve COPD care throughout the world. It is a lung-related disease that restricts the airflow from the lungs and causes difficulty in breathing. The theme for this year’s World COPD Day is “All Together to End COPD.” The symptoms of COPD are respiratory infections, increased risk of heart diseases, high blood pressure, lung cancer, and depression.
Cold weather is considered to be harmful to patients suffering from COPD. Dr Inder Mohan Chugh of Max Super Specialty Hospital, Delhi explained that the cases of COPD have increased dramatically in the past few years. The early symptoms of the disease are breathlessness and normal coughing.
COPD more prominent during winters
The virus may develop in the human body for years without showing any particular symptoms. It causes an obstruction in the free passage of airflow into and out of the lungs which makes breathing difficult. Chugh further added that COPD is more prominent during winters. People with COPD are more prone to illness during the cold weather. A dip in temperature severely affects the lungs and exposure to cold environments may cause dramatic and harmful changes to the respiratory system.
Precautions to be taken
With the beginning of winter, the blood vessels become narrower which results in restricting blood flow and depriving the heart of oxygen. It is important that the patient visits the doctor immediately in case there is a single symptom indicating COPD. Proper precautionary measures should be taken by the patient. It includes preventing infections as much as possible, stay away from people with flu, cold or cough. They should reduce their exposure to smoke and should drink more water throughout the day. Exposure to dust, fumes, chemical, chemical vapors, and tobacco smoke should be avoided as much as possible.