Living with Pulmonary Fibrosis

If you have pulmonary fibrosis there are steps you can take to stay healthy.

  • Take all your prescribed medicines exactly as directed by your doctor.
  • Call your health-care team right away if you have any symptoms or if you notice anything unusual about how you are feeling.
  • Get a flu shot every year. Ask your doctor if you should have the pneumonia vaccine.
  • If you smoke, quit! The American Lung Association has programs to help you.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke. Ask friends and family not to smoke around you.
  • If you are not enrolled in a pulmonary rehabilitation program, ask your doctor about whether you can benefit from one. This is a program that teaches you about your lung disease, how to exercise and how to manage your disease, and provides support and counseling.
  • Stay active and ask about exercises that will help you to get stronger and breathe easier.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet and maintain your ideal body weight.
  • Try eating smaller, more frequent meals. You may find it easier to breathe when your stomach isn't completely full.
  • Join a support group to help you cope with your disease.  The American Lung Association has Better Breathers Clubs all around the country.  Family members and caregivers can also join.
  • If your disease is making you feel anxious or depressed, talk about it with your healthcare team. They can get you help.

In depth resources on pulmonary fibrosis