Pneumonia – Coping and Support

Sometimes the road to recovery from pneumonia can take quite a long time and you may need support to better cope with your condition once in a while. Each person has his own way of coping but knowing of typical mental and physical difficulties experienced by other people with pneumonia can help. Listed below are some helpful tips to help you better cope with pneumonia.

Rest – Resting can provide your body the means to strengthen its immune system.  Getting satisfying sleep or bed rest for at least 10 hours a day can help relieve the pain and discomfort of pneumonia and boost your immune system to give the body enough strength to fight the condition.

Diet – A healthy digestive system can also help in addressing pneumonia. Consuming lots of vegetables and fruits and restricting your intake of animal proteins can help the body produce antibodies to battle the pneumonia infection. Instead of eating meat, you can avail of vegetable proteins contained in cauliflower, eggplant, potatoes, peas, artichokes, spinach and beets among others to reinforce your body and make it strong and energetic. You can also consume fresh juices of citrus fruits, cranberry, cucumber, apples and carrots that can replenish the body with the vitamin requirements it needs. Potassium is required for pneumonia sufferers to repair lung tissues damaged by the infection. You can get this important ingredient from radish, garlic, parsley and celery among others.

Herbal and steam bath – Inhaling steam can be helpful in relieving the symptoms of pneumonia. You can use a large pan filled with hot water adding some drops of aromatic oils like peppermint oil or eucalyptus scent to help you breathe easily. While breathing in the steam, cover your head with a towel to get the maximum amount of steam as possible. To help detoxify your body, you can take an oxygen or sauna steam bath for around 20 minutes. It helps more to add to your bath a quarter cup of sea salt, half a cup of baking soda and 2 cups of hydrogen peroxide for better body detoxification.

Hot compress – Help relieve the inflammation and pain of your pneumonia symptoms using a warm cloth compress or a hot water bag on your chest. Doing so will help dissolve and melt the mucus making it easy to expel.  You can do this twice or thrice a day to help relieve discomfort and pain symptoms.

Seek help – If you’ve been hospitalized and feel weak and unable to do your normal routines, ask help from someone who can help you with everyday tasks until you can eventually do them on your own.

Go to pulmonary rehabilitation – A lot of medical centers provide for pulmonary rehab these days and it can involve counselling, education and helpful exercises to help you regain your normal strength and function to do your normal activities and attain your ideal weight.

Participate in a support group – Online or community support groups are available for people needing help with their pneumonia and chronic lung problems.  You can help others or be helped when you join a group having the same health experience.

Avail of professional help – A lot of people infected with pneumonia suffer from depression. If you have pneumonia and are depressed, you need to be in touch with a mental health specialist or your doctor to treat you and get you off your depression.

Ivelisse DeJongh is a Miami acupuncturist and the medical director at DeJongh Acupuncture Clinic.