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Friday, July 13, 2012

Calming down after an asthma attack

(Bull Publishing)

This CD has been so useful! I used it today to calm down after a sudden asthma attack (right in the middle of an office retreat).

Everyone from my office was at a park, enjoying a delicious BBQ lunch. So was I! Unfortunately, the valley is smokey again from a new fire. I'm not sure where the smoke is coming from, it was all clear when I went to bed last night. I went to open the windows this morning and could smell the smoke from a new fire. There was one that started last night about 40 miles away from me, but the wind must be blowing the smoke into our valley.

Each coworker was giving a short presentation on something we have learned at a conference in the last year. I was last, and by the time it was my turn, I was feeling pretty sick. We had only been at the park for about an hour, but that was long enough for my lungs to be out in the smoke. When I have an asthma attack, I usually start coughing, which is always followed by coughing up the mucus from my lungs. Today my chest was hurting and my throat was just a little twitchy. I was coughing a little, but not as much as I usually do.

I used my inhaler, and thought I would okay. After all, everyone else can sit out at the park in the smoke and not be bothered. But NOOOOO, I have to have asthma. And everything is always worse with asthma. I had to get up and stumble over to my car and drive back to work. On the way back, I did some deep breathing exercises to calm me down. Once here, I was safely in an air conditioned building, no smoke!

 I popped this CD in my computer and plugged my headphones in. It really helped. I wasn't sure if I could stay here or would need to go home, but I'm finally starting to feel a little better.

I got this CD after taking a Chronic Disease Self Management Course, which was developed by Stanford University in California. It teaches people with any chronic disease how to manage their symptoms and their life.

This is what Stanford's website says about the course:

Subjects covered include: 1) techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain and isolation, 2) appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance, 3) appropriate use of medications, 4) communicating effectively with family, friends, and health professionals, 5) nutrition, and, 6) how to evaluate new treatments.

To learn more about the program, click here.  You can contact your local or state health department to see if they teach this course. Our state offers it for free and you also get a free book with the CD.

It has been so helpful, and I'm glad I had the CD on hand to help me calm down after my asthma attack. I missed the best part of our retreat, but oh well. At least I can breathe now! And that's all that matters. 

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