Chronic Bronchitis Alternative Treatment Approaches
Chronic bronchitis can often be managed using alternative treatment methods. This condition, which lasts for at least three months at a time and for at least two years in a row, is associated with many debilitating symptoms, including painful coughing and difficulty breathing.
Chronic bronchitis treatment traditionally involves some combination of medications, inhalers/bronchodilators, oxygen therapy and possibly even surgery. If you’ve been using some of these methods but have yet to find adequate symptom relief, some popular alternative treatment methods for chronic bronchitis include:
- Breathing steam — Inhaling steam can relieve your chronic bronchitis symptoms, as doing so helps to loosen the mucus in your lungs. Try taking a hot shower, leaning over a bowl of hot water with a towel covering your head, or running a humidifier in your bedroom while you’re asleep. Adding a few drops of essential oils into the bowl or on a cloth placed in front of the humidifier can help to amplify the effects of the steam. You may want to try eucalyptus oil, which can soften the mucus in your airways, or pine oil, which can help to bring up your phlegm.
- Staying warm — Because breathing in cold air can lead to a bronchospasm (where the muscles of your airways suddenly contract), you should try to remain in a warm environment. If you do have to venture out into the cold, try wearing a face mask to limit the amount of cold air that you’re breathing into your lungs.
- Drinking more water — Because drinking water can help to thin the mucus in your lungs, thereby making it easier to cough up, you should try to drink at least one glass every two hours. Adding lemon to your water has dual benefits — not only will it make your water more appetizing, the vitamin C found in the lemon will also strengthen your immune system.
- Exercising — If exercise isn’t already a part of your daily routine, adding in a mild exercise regimen will greatly benefit your respiratory health. You don’t want to strain yourself too soon, so try some gentle exercises like walking, biking, yoga or swimming. You should also try incorporating some breathing exercises to help increase your lung capacity. For example, take a deep breath (enough to fill your lungs), then purse your lips while you slowly exhale. Wait a few seconds before repeating the process. If you’re struggling with these exercises, you may want to consider joining a pulmonary rehabilitation group, where trained medical professionals can guide you through breathing exercises and offer you educational and counseling services.
At the Lung Institute, we offer alternative treatment for chronic bronchitis through stem cell therapy. We follow a three-step therapy process, where we remove a sample of either your blood or bone marrow, separate the stem cells from the remaining cells in your sample and then intravenously reintroduce the concentrated stem cells into your bloodstream.