Welcome, friends, to this very special update from Breathing Better Living Well!

leaf on waterOf all the issues related to living with COPD and other chronic lung diseases, there is probably nothing else as frightening, and confusing, than anxiety and panic. These are huge issues for many of you, and why wouldn’t they be? If you can’t breathe, it’s only human to have feelings of panic and anxiety!

Well, this month we’re going to tackle Panic and Anxiety – big time – by taking out some of the mystery and facing them head on with lots of good information and support. Thanks to our friend and BBLW contributing professional, Dr. Vijai Sharma, clinical psychologist, yoga expert, and a COPD patient himself, we have a host of new articles on our site.

Anxiety and Panic Articles — When I first read Dr. Sharma’s groundbreaking document, Anxiety and Panic Attacks in Emphysema and Other Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), I just knew it had to be shared with all of you. This is a major piece, 37-pages long, and thanks to Dr. Sharma’s permission and blessing, I was able to divide and format it into ten articles. (Some of it remains to be formatted, and those articles are yet to come.) Take a look at these new articles on Anxiety and Panic. It’s amazing how understanding what you’re up against can be such a huge help in coping with these monsters! As always, remember that this information is not intended as medical advice, but simply information to look over and then ask your doctor if he or she feels it would be appropriate for you. Also, keep in mind that these articles, in this form, are available exclusively on BBLW and although we welcome you to link to them, they are not to be reproduced without our express permission.

Ask Dr. Sharma, May 5-7! — In conjunction with our emphasis on Panic and Anxiety, Dr. Vijai Sharma himself will be a guest on our BBLW Community for an “Ask Dr. Sharma” forum from May 5-7! Now’s the time to start thinking about your questions. Remember that you must be registered on our community to post a question (but anybody may read questions and answers) so if you want to ask, just register. Remember that our “Ask the RT” and “Ask Dr. Adams” forums remain on our community page.

Come on In! — Remember the good old days when you could just walk down the street and visit a neighbor? Well, our BBLW community brings back that kind of friendly, relaxed feeling. Stop in; see what’s new, what’s up and what we’re up to …

Yoga for COPD — Also new on our articles page, you’ll find the latest installment of Yoga for COPD: The Power of Acceptance and Gratitude. In our quest for concrete information – and there’s nothing wrong with that – but we often overlook the simplest aspects of living well with COPD.

The Spoon Theory — Have you ever been frustrated that friends and loved ones – as well-meaning as they are – don’t really have any idea what you’re going through with chronic lung disease? The Spoon Theory can help! Click here to read this amazing piece.

Bronchoscopy — Ever wondered what a bronchoscopy is all about and how it works? Click here for an excellent video that explains everything.

New Links – You might be surprised at all you’ll find on our BBLW links page!
Here’s what’s new:
Alpha-1 Genetic Counseling Center, part of the Alpha-1 Association. Provides toll-free, confidential genetic counseling for individuals in the Alpha-1 community, as well as serving as an expert resource for healthcare professionals. 1-800-785-3177
Links with information about Mesothelioma, asbestosis, and other occupational-related lung disease. Provides news, information, and resources related to mesothelioma treatments and cancer centers for mesothelioma patients.

RT Helen Sorenson — Good things keep on happening at BBLW! I’m busting my buttons to announce that Helen Sorenson, RRT, who visited our Community Forum and answered your questions recently is our newest BBLW contributing professional! More about this next month. Helen’s Q & A is still up and will remain on the BBLW community page.

New Book100 Questions and Answers about COPD by Dr. Campion Quinn, now in our bookstore! You’ll also find an amazing little book, Attitudes of Gratitude, as mentioned in Dr. Sharma’s newest Yoga for COPD article. I’ve owned this book for a long time and its one of my all-time favorites.

Bargain books — We all know that times are rough right now and money is tight, so treating yourself to a new book can seem pretty pricey. Keep in mind that you can also purchase used books through Amazon, some at just a few dollars (or even a few pennies) each. Amazon also offers bundled books on related topics, which saves on shipping. If there’s something you’re planning to buy from Amazon, just enter through any of the Amazon links on our site and a few cents from each purchase (no matter what it is) will go to help support the cost of keeping BBLW up and running. Thank you!

BBLW Village Gym — See you at the gym! Stop on in at the BBLW Village Gym and meet the gang. You’ll find what your friends with lung disease are doing for exercise, what works best for them – and maybe for you. Don’t sweat it – no spandex allowed! Just bring yourself, an okay from your doc, and a positive attitude!

Blogs — Keep up on the latest. BBLW moderators, Tim, Eileen, and Sandy each have their own blogs. My blog, which is actually more like an article, is posted every two weeks on The Health Central Network. You can get to all these blogs from our home page. My most recent blogs are: Is Your Doctor Meeting your COPD Needs? and Get the Most out of Your Next Doc Appointment – Seven Things You Need to Know. We’ll have more on this subject next month from Margo Corbett with how you can be a smart and savvy patient.

Internet Voices Radio — My interview with Dr. Charlotte E. Thompson of the LifeSense Strategies Internet radio show is now posted. You can find the interview through our About page and once you’re on the radio page, just click on the date of the interview, March 20.

That’s it for now. Until next time, let’s all remember to look for the branch on the peaceful water and learn what we can do to control panic and anxiety and regain control of our lives. Rest assured, I’ll be right there beside you.

I’ll see you next month!



“The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.”
~~~ Marcus Aurelius