Canadian Lung Association Blog

Blog Archives

Dr. Veronica Marcoux, Asthma Camper → Lung Doctor

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As a child, you attended The Lung Association asthma camp.  Tell us what camp was like for you and your experience with asthma. I really enjoyed the time that I spent at the asthma camp! It was a great location right on Diefenbaker Lake, and swimming every day was the highlight, especially on windy days that made for some big waves. There were always a ton of activities planned, and the counsellors were also a blast to be around. When I first started attending I’m fairly sure my asthma was not well controlled, and it was nice to have a

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Posted in Asthma, Lung Health, Stories

Lung health professional Jenna Jangalee shares personal allergy tips

Jenna

A lot of people struggle to get their allergies under control – including Vancouver Respiratory Therapist Jenna Jangalee who sat down to share a few tips with us. Do you find your allergies hard to control? I have allergies year-round, but they really act up in the spring when pollen is particularly high. I do my best to keep my allergies controlled, but even I occasionally struggle. What advice do you give patients? Allergy symptoms can make us feel like we’ve “lost the battle” against allergies, but there are always steps we can take to regain control. For myself, I

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Posted in Allergy, Asthma, Lung Health

Meet some of the volunteers we’ve counted on for years!

Sing, Mina, Jean and Nida - NVW2017

Our volunteers provide critical support that help us to carry out our mission of promoting lung health and managing and preventing lung disease. We simply couldn’t do what we do without them. We are particularly lucky to have a stable core of devoted in-house volunteers, some of whom have been with us for more than 20 years. Meet Mina, our staff volunteer coordinator as well as a few of our cherished volunteers, Sing, Jean and Nida. Sing has volunteered with us for 23 years, helping with work related to our Christmas Seals and other campaigns, and providing valued administrative support

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Posted in Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

Meet Volunteer Anne Kennedy Mitchell

Anne Kennedy Mitchell and Darcy Murdoch - NVW2017

Anne is the volunteer president of our Lung Association Better Breathers support group in New Westminster (also known as the New Westminster Puffers’ Club). During the week, Anne manages a dental clinic. In her spare time, she finds it rewarding to be of help to others, like herself, who often feel isolated and alone in coping with a chronic breathing problem. Anne has struggled with respiratory illness all her life. “I was eleven years old when I was diagnosed with asthma. It became progressively worse over time and in 2008, I was diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease),” she

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Posted in Asthma, COPD, Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

Meet Volunteer Ken Fisher

Ken Fisher and Gina Walton - NVW2017

When Ken retired in 2002, he found himself having trouble breathing. His doctor sent him to a COPD support group – which turned out to be the Langley BC Better Breathers group, run by the BC Lung Association. For the past 9 years, Ken’s been the volunteer leader of the group, which consists of a monthly support group with an invited guest speaker, and two exercise groups, each running 3 times per week. The goal of Better Breathers Groups are to help patients coping with chronic lung conditions (such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, asthma, and lung cancer) as well as their caregivers,

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Posted in COPD, Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

World health expert talks dirty

Nino Kunzli II

The BC Lung Association organizes an annual meeting of world authorities on health-damaging pollutants. At a recent meeting we spoke with visiting pollution expert Dr. Nino Künzli and asked, given we know dirty air poses risks to health, what can we advise people do to protect themselves? According to Künzli individuals and communities would benefit from thinking of the health risks in terms of ‘susceptibility’ – in other words – in terms of an individual’s likelihood of being adversely affected by exposure to health-damaging pollutants. How susceptible we are to pollution is affected by factors such as where we live,

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Posted in Air Quality, Lung Health, Research

How air pollution is messing with our genes

Student in air pollution study - blog

Air pollution can make it hard to breathe. It also can increase someone’s blood pressure and heart rate. Those problems are well known. Now research, in part funded by the BC Lung Association, suggests breathing diesel fumes can trigger another toxic change. It can inappropriately turn some genes on, while turning others off. Just two hours of exposure to diesel exhaust fumes can lead to fundamental health-related changes in biology by switching some genes on, while switching others off, according to researchers at UBC and Vancouver Coastal Health. The study involved putting volunteers in a polycarbonate-enclosed booth — about the

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Posted in Air Quality, Asthma, Lung Health

Becoming Air Aware – How Canada’s AQHI Can Help You

AQHI

The Air Quality Health Index or “AQHI” is a scale designed to help you understand what the air quality around you means to your health. It’s a health protection tool designed to help you make decisions to protect your health by limiting short-term exposure to air pollution and adjusting your activity levels during increased levels of air pollution – and it’s particularly important for those whose health is at most risk from air pollution. The AQHI is designed to give you this information along with some suggestions on how you might adjust your activity levels depending on your individual health risk from

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Posted in Air Quality, Lung Health

Air pollution at home

Air pollution at home - Perry Hystad

When we speak of air pollution, we generally think about the air outside. However, the vast majority of our time is spent indoors. Few studies have looked at how outdoor air pollution affects indoor air quality.  We sat down to gain some insight with Perry Hystad who completed his doctoral studies on air quality at the University of British Columbia.  Why is it important to study indoor air quality? We only spend about 10 percent of our day outdoors and around 70 percent of our time in our houses. Being that that’s where you spend most of your time, that’s

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Posted in Air Quality, Lung Health

On love, laughter and lungs

They say you cannot fall in love with someone you cannot laugh with. True as that might be, laughter is not only the tell-tale sign of compatibility. Is it in fact the best medicine as the old adage suggests? Well, we won’t suggest that laughter will fix a broken bone, treat strep throat or help with a stomach ache. There is better medicine than laughter for those ailments. But while laughter does not replace medicine, it certainly plays a valuable role in good respiratory health. Here are three things that good laughter can do for your lungs and respiratory system.

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Posted in Lung Health, Uncategorized