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Spending Time in Public When You Have COPD

Part of the COPD For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Having COPD doesn’t mean being confined to your home, even if you’re on oxygen therapy you can get out if you feel up to it. A little planning and preparation will make outings less stressful, both physically and mentally, so be smart about what you do and when you do it by following these tips:

  • Check the weather. Hot, humid, windy days are best spent indoors, as are rainy and very cold days.

  • Avoid large crowds. Plan shopping trips on weekday mornings, for example, when the stores are less crowded.

  • Assess your energy. Plan your outings for the time of day when you feel most energetic.

  • Be prepared. Always carry a full day’s supply of meds with you, just in case. If you’re on oxygen, make sure you have a reserve tank in the car.

  • Have a plan for eating out. Look for small portion offerings, or ask to have half your meal put in a to-go container. Other options: Split one meal with your companion, or look among the appetizers, where portion sizes usually are smaller.

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