Most of us know that maintaining good relationships and having a strong support network keeps us healthier and living longer. But when you have a chronic illness like COPD, sometimes this can be a challenge. Particularly on days when your symptoms are bad, being social can be the last thing on your mind. However, isolating yourself may end up making your condition worse, so it’s important to find ways to keep up with your friends and family.
Here are some simple tips to maintaining a social life, even with COPD:
1. Make accommodations
No matter what your plans are, make sure there is some flexibility for how you’re feeling that day. Let your friends or family know ahead of time how you’re doing, and see if any of your activities can be modified, instead of you sitting them out altogether.
2. Plan ahead
Bring your portable oxygen concentrator with you. Look for benches or other places to rest. See if there are places for shade or sun, depending on your needs. Stay stocked on snacks and water as well.
3. Reach out
Don’t be afraid to send a nice email, note, or text to a loved one, or call them on the phone. This is especially important on days when you’re feeling sick, lonely, or frustrated. Your loved ones want to help- give them a chance to do so!
4. Build your tribe
Making friends is possible at any age, and in any physical condition. Find people you have things in common with, or who share activities or interests you enjoy. Rally your closest companions near you, and resolve to all stay in touch, no matter what.
Want more tips on managing your COPD? Reach out to us today!