The benefits of regular exercise and good physical fitness for everyone have become well known in the past 50 years. So, how do these benefits apply to you?
Gyms are wonderful places to exercise, but they can also be great places for germs. Germs can spread as far as six feet (two meters) through droplets released in the air by coughs or sneezes, and can remain in the air on tiny droplets -- ready to be breathed in.
If your child has cystic fibrosis, chances are you have some concerns about school fitness activities like physical education classes or school sports teams. Even though some people with CF have trouble breathing and tire easily, exercise can be especially important.
All too often, we begin an exercise program but quickly quit. Change doesn't happen all at once, nor does it happen at the same rate for different people. Starting at the right pace is important, and knowing your fitness level, or state of readiness, is key to finding the exercise plan that's right for you.
Individuals with cystic fibrosis and other chronic diseases often have a “hidden” loss of muscle mass, despite normal body weight and BMI. Increasing your protein intake and exercising regularly are easy ways to preserve muscle mass.
Active cycle of breathing technique (ACBT) combines different breathing techniques that help clear mucus from the lungs in three phases. The first phase helps you relax your airways. The second phase helps you to get air behind mucus and clears mucus. The third phase helps force the mucus out of your lungs.
There are different ways to clear your airways. Most are easy to do. Infants and toddlers will need help from a parent or caregiver. Older kids and adults can choose airway clearance techniques (ACTs) that they can do on their own.
Although cystic fibrosis affects many parts of the body, the focus is often on the lungs because of the disease's effect on breathing.
Autogenic drainage (AD) means “self-drainage” and uses different speeds of breathing to move mucus. To do it, your respiratory therapist can teach you how to control your breaths. You will learn how fast and deeply to breathe to fill certain parts of your lungs with air. AD can take some practice and is usually recommended for people age 8 and older.