National COPD Awareness Month
November 1, 2024 – November 30, 2024 CDT
National COPD Awareness Month is observed in November and sponsored by the American Lung Association.
National COPD Awareness Month is a time for organizations and communities across the country to increase the overall awareness of COPD. COPD, or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, is any disorder that persistently obstructs bronchial airflow. COPD is frequently related to cigarette smoking and mainly involves two related diseases, chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Both are frequently present and cause chronic obstruction of airflow to the lungs. The obstruction is generally permanent and progresses over time.
Get Tested for COPD: Your Lungs Will Thank You
If you’re often short of breath during everyday activities, your chest feels tight, or you cough a lot, you may be chalking it up to getting older, having allergies, or being a smoker (now or in the past). Fortunately, there’s a way to know whether something more may be at play. Consider getting a lung function test to find out if you have a serious condition called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. Knowing the cause of your cough and breathing problems will not only help you manage your symptoms – it’ll help you feel better, too.
COPD includes two main conditions, emphysema and chronic bronchitis. It’s usually caused by cigarette smoking or breathing in other irritants, such as dusts or chemical fumes. In a small fraction of people, a genetic condition called alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) deficiency plays a role in causing COPD. More than 16 million Americans have been diagnosed with COPD, and millions more have it but don’t know it, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI).
COPD doesn’t have a cure at the moment, but if you seek advice from a health care provider and get diagnosed early, you can slow down this progressive disease. During your appointment, your provider will talk to you about your symptoms and your medical history, then listen to your breathing. He or she also may recommend one or more tests to help diagnose COPD.#personalizedcause