It’s already one of the biggest killers in Canada, and by 2020, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is expected to be the third-leading cause of death in the world.
An estimated 3.2-million Canadians are living with COPD, but of those 3.2-million, half don’t know they have the disease.
To help raise awareness for COPD, the Lung Association has launched a new initiative: The UnFun Balloon. Here’s how it works: residents around Toronto might find a balloon in their mailboxes, courtesy of the Lung Association. (If you don’t get one, don’t fret—this experiment can be done with any ol’ balloon.) Blow it up. If you struggle to blow it up completely, your airways and lungs could be obstructed, and you should visit your doctor.
In addition to the balloon test, other symptoms of COPD include:
- A long-lasting cough
- A cough with mucus
- Feeling short of breath while doing every day activities, such as climbing stairs or carrying groceries
- Lung infections such as cold or flu that longer than usual
- Wheezing when you breathe
- Feeling tired without having expended energy
For more information, visit the Ontario Lung Association website.