Breath Easy! Get Fit with Lung Problems
It’s a common notion that TB patients can’t do much physical activity and hence can’t get fit. Here are some workaround fitness tips.
In 2021, India had around 21.35 lakh new Tuberculosis (TB) cases. While this number may seem low, India accounted for around 28% of new cases all over the world. Additionally, around 2.2 lakh people die every year because of this disease.
These numbers may seem high, but don’t fret! While TB is a highly contagious bacterial infection, it can be easily cured by consuming antibiotics. All things considered, people who have been diagnosed with tuberculosis or have had it in the past may worry that they cannot participate in physical activities or maintain a fitness routine.
However, this is not true. With proper care and guidance, people with lung problems can stay fit and healthy. Let’s find out how you can show that you have lungs of steel.
What is TB
Before we delve into how to stay fit while battling it, let’s look at what this disease actually is and what it entails. This disease primarily affects the lungs, causing symptoms like cough, chest pain, fever, night sweats, and fatigue.
The bacteria can spread through the air when someone with active tuberculosis coughs, speaks or sneezes. It can also affect other parts of the body, such as the kidneys, spine, or brain.
It is essential to complete the entire course of medication to avoid antibiotic resistance and prevent TB's spread.
Tips to get fit while fighting lung problems
Let’s get straight to it. Here are some pointers for you to go from being a couch potato to a fitness hero and become a lung-problem warrior.
1. Consult your doctor before starting any exercise program
A doctor can help you develop a fitness plan that takes into account your current health condition and limitations. Thus, it makes sense to consult a doctor before beginning any exercise program, especially if you have lung problems due to tuberculosis.
2. Start slow and gradually increase the intensity
Been inactive for a while or have lung problems? Start slow and gradually, one set at a time, and increase the intensity of your exercise routine. This is vital as starting with low-impact activities, like walking or swimming, can help you build up your endurance. Then, you can move on to more challenging activities.
3. Focus on breathing
Breathing exercises are helpful for people with lung problems. Deep breathing exercises can increase lung capacity, making it easier to breathe during physical activities. You can even meditate to improve your breathing.
4. Choose the right exercise
Low-impact activities are great for people with lung problems. These activities are less strenuous on the lungs and can help improve cardiovascular health.
You can try walking, cycling, or swimming. Yoga and tai chi are also good options that can help improve breathing and reduce stress.
5. Use medication as prescribed
If you have been prescribed medication to manage your lung problems, taking them as prescribed is essential. Skipping medication or not taking them as directed can worsen symptoms and make it harder to do physical activities.
6. Stay hydrated
Drinking plenty of water before, during, and after exercise can help keep you hydrated and make it easier to breathe. Dehydration can make it harder to breathe and cause fatigue, so it's essential to stay hydrated.
7. Monitor your symptoms
It's important to listen to your body and monitor your symptoms during exercise. If you experience shortness of breath, chest pain, or any other symptoms, stop exercising and rest. If symptoms persist, consult your doctor.
Lung problems do not mean you cannot stay fit and healthy. Don't let tuberculosis stop you from achieving your fitness goals!
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