What are COPD management tips?

Healthy lifestyle changes can help you with your COPD management.

Stop smoking

Quit smoking
The most important thing you can do to help with COPD management is quit smoking. Ask your doctor for resources that can help.

Breathing exercises

Practice breathing exercises for COPD
Breathing exercises for COPD can be an important part of living with COPD. See two simple breathing exercise you can do now.

Eating healthy

Eat healthy
A healthy diet can help you manage your COPD. If you’re overweight, losing weight can make it easier to breathe. Talk to your doctor before starting any nutrition program.

Rescue inhaler

Carry your rescue inhaler
Keep your rescue medication with you for sudden COPD symptoms. If you don’t have a rescue inhaler, ask your doctor to prescribe one. Also, avoid the COPD triggers you know about (like dust or smoke), and stay inside when outdoor air quality is poor.


Stay active
Get moving! Getting active now is essential if you want to stay active in the long-term. Consult with your doctor before adding exercises, which may help improve your overall strength, including in the muscles you use to breathe.


Keep it simple
COPD can make you tired sometimes. So give yourself some extra time to do things. Make your chores a little easier: keep the things you use often in easy reach, and choose clothing that’s easy to put on and take off.

Go to Helpful Resources for links to COPD foundations and advocacy organizations that may help you live better with COPD.

COPD Breathing Exercises

Pursed lip breathing:

  1. Breathe in through your nose, counting.
  2. Breathe out through pursed lips, and try to exhale for twice as long.

Belly breathing:

  1. Relax your head and neck, and breathe in through your nose as you count.
  2. Try to feel your belly rising and falling.
  3. Breathe out through your mouth, trying to make it last two to three times as long as your inhale.

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