Russell shares his tips on how to avoid secondhand smoke, fumes, and other environmental factors that may trigger your COPD symptoms.
Secondhand smoke can be environmental smoke can be from wildfires in national parks to things wood fireplaces people use for heating. Secondhand smoke can trigger breathlessness, and it is something to keep that in mind when you’re going out and about for the day.
Look Into Your City’s Air Quality
In the mornings, I get up and have a look outside and see what’s going on. I check into my city’s air quality before going out because I know I will become breathless very quickly.
The other thing to consider for people who live in built-up areas is traffic and the pollution you get from traffic. Be mindful of the peak periods of traffic around your area because a car’s exhaust fumes may trigger your breathlessness and ruin your day fairly quickly.
Stay Away From Areas Where People Smoke
I guess the big one is cigarette smoke and trying to avoid areas where people smoke, and I know from experience that that varies from country to country.
In Australia, we have good laws for where people can smoke, so it’s quite easy to avoid smoking areas. Whereas in other countries like the United States and parts of Europe, smoking’s quite prevalent in dining areas and outdoor areas.
I know that sometimes it’s incredibly hard to get away from this and it’s about knowing your local area, knowing where the areas you can go to get some respite from the cigarette smoke and other pollutants.
Avoid Construction Zones
For me, I’m lucky. I can come down to the beach today and get away from all the fumes from the construction zones that are happening around my house.
Today they’re resurfacing the road, and the fumes are going right through the house, and they’re making me quite breathless. The resurfacing’s going to take about two or three hours so a good opportunity for me to come down, talk with you and admire this beautiful part of the world.
So there are some things to consider for avoiding secondhand smoke and making your day just a little bit better.