Managing COPD Symptoms

Managing Your Symptoms

Moist air can help loosen your mucus so you can cough it up easier. It is important to keep your airways free of excess mucus.

To help clear your mucus

  1. Turn your shower on hot 
  2. Let the bathroom fill with steam
  3. Sit in the bathroom for 10-15 minutes
  4. Do your coughing and deep breathing exercises

It is important to watch for changes in your mucus. It can mean that you are getting a lung infection (pneumonia).

Call Your Doctor If

  • Your sputum is thicker or stickier
  • You have green, yellow, or brown sputum for more than 12 hours 
  • You have a fever greater than 100 degree fever for more than 24 hours

Signs of Worsening COPD

A flare up can start very quickly. It is important to know the signs and to take your rescue inhaler right away. Signs that your COPD is worsening may include:

  • More coughing
  • Shortness of breath with activity
  • Increased mucus
  • Wheezing

This is when you should use your fast-acting inhaler!

A rescue inhaler is a special kind of medicine called bronchodilator. This is a fast-acting medicine that:

  • Relaxes the airways
  • Opens up the airways
  • Helps clear mucus
  • Prevents wheezing when you exercise
  • Helps clear mucus
  • Prevents wheezing when you exercise