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How does obesity affect respiratory health?

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  Obesity is becoming a global health issue that is becoming widespread even in countries beyond the US. Being obese raises a person's chances of developing heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic conditions. Lisa M. Cannon, M.D. explains why being overweight can affect a person's respiratory health.  Image source: Pexels.com When a person carries extra weight and their BMI increases, the lung volume decreases. This causes limited air entry and a lower total lung capacity. Obese individuals can also experience shortness of breath even with minor physical activity. This condition is called exertional dyspnea. According to recent studies, obese and overweight individuals with COPD are more prone to experiencing the effects of the chronic condition leading to frequent hospitalization compared to others. Being obese also affects breathing during sleep. Lisa M. Cannon, M.D. says that those with the condition can also develop obstructive sleep apnea syndrome which causes

Consider these things when choosing a face mask

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  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the CDC recommends every individual, both sick and healthy, to wear a mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Many types of face coverings exist, and each one of them has different levels of effectiveness.  Image source: hackensackmeridianhealth.org A person carrying COVID-19 can spread the virus through droplets by sneezing, coughing, and talking, especially when they are not wearing any form of face covering. Face masks are supposed to cover the nose and the mouth in order to block droplets from spreading. Cloth or fabric masks can be washed and reused. However, these get wet and dirty more easily compared to other masks, says Lisa M. Cannon, M.D. Health care professionals and individuals accompanying sick loved ones in the hospital or  other medical facilities are required to wear N95 masks. These masks filter out 95 percent of liquids and particles that have a chance of reaching the mouth and the nose. Some N95 masks are

More tips for healthy sleep

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  As many people are still working from home and limiting their time outdoors, some suffer from erratic sleep patterns. Sleep medicine expert Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., shares more tips to help people get better sleep quality.  Image source: Unsplash.com Don't associate the bedroom with sleeplessness Sleep experts advise that the bed should be used only for rest and sex. If a person is unable to sleep for at least 20 minutes at the start of their bedtime, specialists like Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., suggest doing a relaxing activity in low light. Thinking about falling asleep might also cause anxiety, so it's best to try not to be conscious of the time but focus on feeling relaxed. Keep a sleep journal When trying new sleep-inducing methods, it is best to write about them in a sleep journal. This will allow one to see if these strategies are being helpful. Other experts meanwhile suggest writing worries and other thoughts down in a journal before bedtime. Lisa M. Cannon, M

What are the main symptoms of COPD?

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  Millions of people all over the world suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD. This condition includes shortness of breath, emphysema, and bronchitis. COPD is common among smokers, and many people don't realize that they have the disease until later in life. Pulmonologists suggest that patients see a professional once they have difficulty breathing instead of dismissing it as fatigue or a sign of aging. Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., a board-certified pulmonary disease physician from New Jersey, discusses some of the disease's symptoms. Chronic cough and increased production of phlegm A cough that lasts for days, along with greenish phlegm, can be a sign of COPD. The body's reaction to the increased mucus production and other environmental irritants is through coughing. Too much coughing can cause fatigue and discomfort to the body. This is why those with suspected COPD need to consult their doctors to find ways to clear the airways without further

Just quit smoking? Five basic tips to combat insomnia

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  While many turn their gaze on caffeine as the culprit for insomnia, nicotine is the main offender. In order to enjoy proper sleep hygiene, one must quit smoking. However, nicotine withdrawal causes sleep disturbances. In this blog post, Lisa M. Cannon, M.D. shares a few tips on how to win the battle against insomnia.  Image source: huffingtonpost.com A warm bath eases the mind and the body, preparing one for some sweet slumber. It is important to set a relaxing environment before hitting the sack to let the mind and body know it is time to rest. Drink herbal tea before bedtime to calm the body and prepare it for sleep. Not only will it prep the mind and body for a good sleep, a cup of tea also helps relieve stress. Lessen caffeine intake . While cutting caffeine to zero would be unnecessary, reducing it by half will prevent one from being over-caffeinated. Drinking too much coffee can cause one to feel jittery and irritated. Make it a habit to drink coffee early in th

Start sleeping early with these tips

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  Experts recommend adults to clock in seven to nine hours of sleep a night, which seems impossible to many given the tasks they need to accomplish in a day. While a struggle to many, getting to bed early and sleeping for the required number of hours can do wonders for one's health. Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., shares a few tips on how to sleep early.  Image source: thestir.cafemom.com As much as possible, expend energy during daytime . Tiring oneself out from physical exercise offers better chances of getting to bed earlier. However, exercising too close to bedtime increases body temperature, stimulates the brain, and increases adrenaline levels, which may cause one to feel wide awake in the middle of the night. Break a sweat not later than six in the evening to get quality sleep at night.  Image source: thenewdaily.au Develop a nightly bedtime routine . Avoid thinking about going to sleep five minutes before the desired time. Start the routine an hour before the targeted time o

Boosting lung power in lockdown

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Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., knows that in today's world, one that is struggling with the coronavirus, every little bit helps. From good governance and compliant citizens to efficient business tactics and the development of new and innovative technologies, humanity is indeed very capable of defeating the global health threat. Image source: wellandgood.com Image source: chopra.com As an extension of the service that she does as a pulmonary specialist, Lisa M. Cannon, M.D., has written and released a series of informative blogs on how people can cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. For today's blog, Lisa M. Cannon, M.D. shares two more ways of boosting lung power for people who are still cooped up in their own homes. Meditation Maybe because of its lack of physical movements, meditation is one of the most overlooked health and fitness activities. Be that as it may, meditation has some of the greatest benefits of any activity known to man. For starters, it