Symptoms of COPD

5) Your emotional health

A person sitting on a park bench with her head in her hands. Expression of despair. Mental health and state of mind.

© Crown Copyright 2009

Being diagnosed and living with any chronic illness can be stressful and lead to lots of unexpected changes in your life. People with lung diseases can experience increased worries, anxiety, low mood or depression. Your emotional health is just as important as your physical health and being diagnosed with COPD can be stressful. Your doctor or nurse may use a screening questionnaire to assess your mood.

It is important that you seek advice and support if you are feeling low in mood or anxious. Sometimes just talking about your feelings can help. You may have been worrying about your health when you don’t need to or a simple change to your treatment or lifestyle could make a big difference. Speaking with your doctor or other healthcare professionals about your concerns and worries, will allow them to support you and ensure you get the right treatment.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends or your respiratory nurse could put you in touch with a local support group of people who really understand what it is like to live with COPD.

Remember there are lots of different things that may help you and sharing your concerns with someone is the first step in getting the right help.

For more information on your emotions see:
Moving on together: Managing challenging emotions section [.pdf, 6.08MB]
Moving on Together (MoT): A self-management workbook by NHS Ayrshire & Arran.