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Breathlessness Management Resources

Breathlessness is a common and distressing symptom in many advanced long term diseases, causing considerable disability, anxiety and social isolation.  Both the person who suffers from it and those closest to them can  become anxious and sometimes depressed and worried by the impact of breathlessness. 

The good news is that there are lots of things that can be done to help manage it. The information leaflets and other links on this page have been designed to  help individuals and their families cope better with persistent breathlessness.

The information leaflets were reproduced and adapted for NHS Tayside by a multidisciplinary working group with help and advice from patients. The working group would like to thank and acknowledge the Cambridge Breathlessness Intervention Service, Addenbrookes Hospital ,Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust  for their original work and kind permission to reproduce it .                 

                    

COVID-19

These resources are to support patients with chronic breathlessness despite optimal management of their underlying condition. The aim is to reduce the impact of breathlessness using mostly non-drug approaches including breathing techniques, anxiety management and building up activity levels.  

The resources  are NOT for :

  • managing  people  in the acute phase of COVID- 19 - (use Coronavirus 111 helpline &  local COVID pathway 

Managing breathlessness at home during the Covid - 19 outbreak - factsheet: khp-gp-breathlessness-resource.pdf            

 

Breathlessness Support Factsheet 1: The breathing thinking functioning (BTF) approach - Patient information leaflet

Breathlessness Support Factsheet 2: Handheld fan - Patient information leaflet 

Breathlessness Support Factsheet 3: Breathing techniques to ease breathlessness - Patient information leaflet

Breathlessness Support Factsheet 8: Managing your energy levels - Patient information leaflet

Breathlessness Support Factsheet: Managing Breathlessness - The Calming Hand - Patient information leaflet

 

Useful sites and further information on managing breathlessness: 

The link below is to is to the Addenbrooke's Hospital website with video and audio to help manage breathlessness including:

  • Causes of breathlessness
  • Relaxation scripts 

https://www.cuh.nhs.uk/breathlessness-intervention-service-bis/resources/video-and-audio-help-manage-breathlessness 

Click on the  link  below for  St Christophers Hospite site and  a set of four videos designed to give people advice and information about managing breathlessness

 https://www.stchristophers.org.uk/videos/managing-breathlessness/

Supporting someone with breathlessness -

A source of help and advice for family and friends of people with breathlessness developed by healthcare professionals, health researchers and people who have cared for someone living with breathlessness. It also inlcudes advice to help family and friends supporting someone with breathlessness that may be recovering from COVID-19.

https://supporting-breathlessness.org.uk/ 

  • Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland 

https://www.chss.org.uk/documents/2013/08/e10_breathlessness.pdf 

  • British Lung Foundation  

https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/breathlessness/how-to-manage-breathlessness 

  • MacMillan 

https://www.macmillan.org.uk/cancer-information-and-support/impacts-of-cancer/breathlessness/managing-and-treating-breathlessness 

  • Marie Curie 

https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/globalassets/media/documents/how-we-can-help/publications/managing-breathlessness.pdf 

  • For information on symptom management in relation to breathlessness please click on the link below for the Scottish Palliative Care Guidelines breathlessness webpage: 

https://www.palliativecareguidelines.scot.nhs.uk/guidelines/symptom-control/breathlessness.aspx