The official blog of the Lung Institute.
Could holistic pulmonary fibrosis treatment options benefit you? Let’s take a deeper look.
People living with pulmonary fibrosis manage challenging symptoms. These symptoms include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, a dry cough and fatigue. Obstructive lung disease and restrictive lung disease are the two major categories of lung disease. Within these categories are several types of lung diseases. Pulmonary fibrosis is an example of a restrictive lung disease. People with restrictive lung disease cannot fully fill their lungs with air. Also, they cannot fully expand their lungs.
To break it down further, pulmonary fibrosis is a type of interstitial lung disease. In pulmonary fibrosis, the lungs become scarred and the lungs’ intricate passageways thicken and harden.
Often, people search for information about their pulmonary fibrosis treatment options. These treatments may include traditional medications and therapies as well as holistic pulmonary fibrosis treatment options. Let’s take a deeper look at some examples of holistic pulmonary fibrosis treatment options.
What are Traditional Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment Options?
Many people with pulmonary fibrosis take medications prescribed by their doctors. Medications, certain therapies and surgery are considered traditional treatment options. For example, doctors may prescribe inhalers, steroids and immune suppressants such as methotrexate, cyclophosamide and azathioprine among others.
Sometimes doctors recommend lung transplant surgery after the condition has impaired most of the lungs’ function. While lung transplants can offer many benefits, they are invasive procedures and can be risky. After the surgery, lung transplant recipients take anti-rejection medications for the rest of their lives.
For people with low blood oxygen levels, doctors often prescribe oxygen therapy. Oxygen therapy helps people improve or maintain a better blood oxygen level.
What are Holistic Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment Options?
Holistic pulmonary fibrosis treatment options may be used in combination with traditional treatments. Holistic pulmonary fibrosis treatment options may include lifestyle changes and other therapies. Before trying any holistic options, it’s important to talk with your doctor.
Lifestyle changes may help improve general health. These changes include eating well, getting plenty of exercise, stopping smoking and resting enough.
Many people with lung disease have trouble maintaining a healthy weight. Often, people find it uncomfortable to eat. However, eating a healthy diet that has enough calories is important. Try eating more often throughout the day and eating smaller meals. If you notice that certain foods aggravate your symptoms, it’s best to avoid those foods. Focus on eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
Regular exercise, even very gentle forms of exercise, can help you maintain better lung function, manage stress and improve your strength and stamina. Set an exercise goal for yourself. For example, your goal could be to walk around your house three times a day. As you get stronger, you may want to increase your walking to include walking to the end of the street and back home.
For some people, stem cell therapy has helped them feel better. Stem cell therapy works to promote healing from within the lungs and may improve quality of life. Also, stem cell treatment can be used in conjunction with healthy lifestyle habits and with your pulmonary fibrosis treatment plan.