NYU Langone specialists recommend making lifestyle changes to control symptoms of bronchiectasis, such as shortness of breath, and prevent future lung infections, which can further damage the airways.
To minimize the chances of infection, doctors recommend getting the flu vaccine each year during cold and flu season. The flu shot can also help prevent pneumonia, which may cause further lung damage in people with bronchiectasis. Your physician may also recommend one or more pneumonia vaccines.
Doctors also recommend minimizing exposure to environmental irritants like secondhand smoke, which can further impair lung function.
Smoking irritates the lungs and exacerbates breathing problems. NYU Langone’s Tobacco Cessation Programs can give you the support you need to quit for good.
Exercise helps keep your heart and lungs in shape. Your doctor may advise gradually increasing your aerobic exercise, either on your own or with supervision. The intensive breathing associated with exercise can help the airways clear mucus more efficiently.
Drinking 8 to 10 8-ounce glasses of water per day helps thin mucus, making it easier to expel.
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