Besides 18% of the world’s population, India is also home to as much as 32% of global respiratory diseases. The Global Burden of Disease study has found respiratory afflictions to occupy a major share of the disease burden in India – only preceded by coronary artery disorders.
More importantly, India is also grappling with the issue of rising air pollution. While worsening air quality is one of the primary reasons behind increasing incidences of respiratory diseases, other factors such as infections, allergy and genetics play a role as well.
Besides ensuring that you do your part in preserving the environment and not add to the depleting air quality, you can also adopt preventive measures, in the form of home remedies and introducing basic lifestyle changes. This can go a long way in maintaining respiratory health. In addition to full-fledged medical care, you can also consider the following:
Should you frequently suffer from respiratory distress, you must steer clear of strong smells, including mosquito repellents (sprays, coils), incense sticks, perfumes, deodorants and room fresheners. Such strong fragrance can irritate the respiratory tract, further adding to your woes.
In case you cannot do without body fragrances, try using the milder ones that are derived from organic sources.
People with respiratory problems should blindly start following cotton fashion. Cotton fabric is breathable and dispenses moisture from the body by absorbing it from the skin. Prevention of moisture building allows thermal insulation, something that protects you from the heat in summer and cold in winter; thereby keeping a check on suffocating triggers, if any.
Inhaling steam regularly keeps the nasal passages clear, something that only helps comfortable and stable breathing. When you inhale steam, heat reaches your lungs where it breaks down the mucus. This helps prevent any breathlessness.
More importantly, inhaling steam is both a preventive and remedial measure. The effects are augmented, should you add essential oils – such as peppermint or eucalyptus oil – to the water.
In addition to the simple afore-mentioned home remedies, introducing elementary lifestyle changes can relieve respiratory distress as well. These include exercising (in order to improve general fitness), quitting tobacco, losing excess weight (should obesity be linked to respiratory problems), and avoiding allergens and pollutants.