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If you have asthma, or trouble breathing, your doctor generally checks on your breathing.They probably use a machine that you are required to blow into so that your exact lung capacity can be identified. And, if the main airways in your lungs are clear without any obstructions.
Did you know that you can also do your own lung tests at home? Well, yes there are easy ways in which you can evaluate your lung health at the comfort of your home. Here’s a simple yet effective test that is economical and doesn’t require much time, and can help you keep better track of your health! But before we explain the lung test to you, let’s understand why we should test our lungs?
Why Should You Test Lung Health?
Testing your lung function and its capacity is very important. Because this gives you a way to understand your exact lung capacity. Also, it can have an effect and increase your lung strength over time.
Here are some reasons as to why you should test your lung health at home:
- Get to know any problems just in time for early treatment
- Know when to call your doctor or get emergency care
- Keep a track and identify your asthma triggers
- Determine how your oxygen treatment is working in case of asthma or COPD
Peak Flow Meter
Measure your lung capacity at home with a gadget called a peak flow meter also known as a home spirometer. This is your home solution for better health! The lung function test through the peak flow meter is not a means of a replacement for seeing a doctor, but it can surely help you keep tabs on your lung health.
This meter is a handheld device that measures the strength of your breath. All you need to do is breathe through one end of the meter, and you get a reading instantly on the scale. This device can come handy if you have chronic bronchitis, and help with asthma or COPD. This meter does not hurt your pocket much and is readily available at any local drug store or any online giants like Amazon. But before you purchase one make sure you consult your doctor.
How To Properly Use a Peak Flow Meter?
There may be specific instructions for the particular Peak Flow Meter that you are using so it’s best to first get the instruction of your physician.
But, here are some tips that you can consider:
- Set the indicator or pointer to zero
- Then, take a deep breath before starting
- Put the flow meter in the mouth with the tongue down, out of the way of the mouthpiece, and then close the lips around the mouthpiece
- Blow out very hard and fast. The indicator will move in response to the exhalation
- You will get your reading. You should get it next to the pointer or indicator
- Check the number on the scale. This is the peak of expiratory flow
- Move the indicator back to zero and repeat the entire routine correctly twice
- Record the best of the three attempts in a chart or notebook
- Measure the peak flow at the same time each day for a few weeks to determine your best performance
- Measure your peak flow rate close to the same time each day. You and your healthcare provider can determine the best times. One suggestion is to measure your peak flow rate twice daily between 7 and 9 am and between 6 and 8 pm
- This rate is your benchmark for knowing how much asthma medicine you need to take from one day to the next.
When you have a lung disease or other respiratory issues, the status of your condition can fluctuate from day to day. Knowing your lung capacity can help you keep track of your health, and if it’s something you can do at home with a home spirometer then it can be cherry on the cake. Use this device as one of the most convenient ways to track the daily progress of your lungs. If you found this article helpful then don’t forget to share it with your friends, and family.