What happens around your elderly family member is crucial, especially when she’s dealing with COPD. Small changes in the immediate area around her can cause her to struggle to breathe, which is never a situation that you want her to have to do. Learning more about potential triggers can help you to do more to avoid them.

Scents, Fragrances, and Strong Smells

Smells and scents, even light ones, can be a huge trigger for your senior if she has COPD or other lung issues. Even unlit candles can be strong enough to create problems for her. This is usually because the chemicals and oils used to make the fragrances can be an irritant. You might not notice them, but your senior sure will.

Bacteria and Other Germs

One of the biggest concerns for someone with COPD is random bacteria and germs that can cause lung infections. These germs might be something that you can fight off, but when they get into your senior’s body, she’s not as able to keep them at bay. She might even end up with a serious lung infection and that can take a lot out of her.

Allergic Triggers

Allergens can be just as irritating for your senior as germs can be, especially if she’s highly allergic to some common allergens. Dust can be a problem and is a common allergen, so keeping her home as free of dust as you can is an important step. Elder care providers can help with this, while also helping with other tasks for your senior.


Smoke can be especially problematic for your elderly family member when she’s battling COPD. Secondhand smoke from smokers is obviously a big problem, but it’s important to note that cooking smoke, smoke from a grill, and even smoke from a neighbor’s grill can all be equally troubling to her breathing. Taking pains to avoid anything that creates smoke can be urgent.

Air Quality

Air quality is a measure of the pollutants in the air, including ozone, that make breathing more difficult for certain groups of people. Most weather apps include some sort of information about air quality, even if it is a little vague. For more detailed information, you can sign up for alerts through the AirNow website.

Your senior may not be able to avoid every single trigger that creates breathing issues for her but being aware of the potential issues can help.

When you are in need of care for a senior loved one, consider home care provided by Golden Heart Senior Care. We have offices nationwide. For more information, call us today at (800) 601-2792.