The official blog of the Lung Institute.
Celebrating the Fourth of July with COPD
Fireworks will spark up again as we celebrate another year of America’s Independence. Families are cleaning out their yards in order to prepare for a fun day outside with the family. Although being outside is enjoyed by most, some people, especially those who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), struggle with the intense heat released by the sun.
Patients with COPD are told to avoid performing many activities out in the sun, as the sun can reduce air quality, and the heat can also make it difficult to maintain a normal body temperature. Having COPD can discourage people from getting involved in summer fun. Sadly, summer only lasts a few months, and getting out there and enjoying the season is important! Luckily, there are a few alternatives that can help anyone have fun in the sun.
Have Fun and Stay Cool
There are many different fun and laid-back party games that can be exciting and safe for the entire family. The first two are very inexpensive and simple. Having either a water balloon or an egg toss can get everyone involved and does not require extreme movement. Finding a shady place in the backyard can help people with COPD stay cool and enjoy the game. To spice up the water balloon or egg toss, you can add a reward for the two finalists. This will add some intensity to the game while still allowing everyone to be fully engaged.
Another option is croquet. While it does require a trip to the store, once you own the game materials, you will be ready for summer fun every year. This game includes polymer balls, wickets, mallets, stakes and handles. The purpose of this game is to use the mallet and hit the ball through the stakes. This game can be played in teams or as individuals. When setting up for croquet, you have the leeway to position the stakes wherever it is comfortable for people with COPD. Finding a shady area in the yard or setting up under tents can help patients with lung disease stay cool and enjoy the game. Similarly to the balloon or egg toss, you can make it exciting by adding a fun reward for the winning person or duo.
Teamwork is Dream Work
The last game is called rollerball parachute. This game is great for people with COPD because it has the flexibility to be played sitting down or standing up. In order to play this game, there needs to be a parachute and at least one beach ball. Everyone needs to gather around the parachute and grab hold of it. When everyone is ready, someone will throw the ball on top of the parachute and each person will swing his or her arms to make sure it does not fall off. Unlike the other games, your family will be working together to achieve one goal instead of competing against one another.
Treat your Condition
The heat from the sun can present problems for people with COPD, but on days like July 4th, finding ways to enjoy the summer is important. The Lung Institute wants to make sure that everyone suffering with lung disease still enjoys the summer like anyone else. If you or a loved one is suffering from a chronic lung disease like COPD, please contact one of our patient coordinators at (800) 729-3065 for a free consultation.