As well as being fit and active, it is important to optimise lung capacity pre-surgery as this can help with your recovery post surgery. This can be achieved by completing hourly deep breaths (5-10 per hour) when awake.
Take a deep breath in through your nose, hold for a few seconds and then breathe out through your mouth slowly.
How to use an incentive Spirometer: If deemed appropriate you may be given an incentive spirometer pre or post surgery to help with increasing your lung capacity.
- Ensure you are sat up
- Place the mouthpiece in your mouth and make a seal around it with your lips
- Take a slow, deep breath in, as deep as you can. As you breathe in, the piston will rise
- As the piston rises, the ball/indicator will also rise (the indicator should remain inbetween the arrows)
- Try to get the piston as high as you can but ensure that you keep the indicator in between the arrows
6. If the indicator does not stay in between the arrows then you are breathing either too fast or too slow
7. When you are unable to inhale anymore, hold your breath for a few seconds and check how high the piston reaches. Breathe out slowly
8. Rest for a few seconds
9. Complete 5-10 deep breaths
10. Put the marker at the level the piston reached on your incentive spirometer. This will be your goal for next time
11. Try to use the incentive spirometer every 2-3 hours when you are awake