I’d like a Harmonica, please

Can you imagine sitting for a half hour each day breathing in and out thru a straw? That is an exercise used by pulmonary rehabilitation to strengthen diaphragm muscles for COPD COPD is a catch-all term that includes people diagnosed with illnesses like emphysema, asthma and chronic bronchitis. (I think with our slowed muscle response time and weakened muscles PwP could benefit equally well.)

VA Health Promotion-Disease Prevention Coordinator in Tampa… Dave Folds, says “The type of breathing used to play the harmonica is like the breathing exercise used in therapy for COPD. Basically, the breathing exercises are pursed lips style breathing, like breathing in and out of a straw (which would be) the same way you would blow in and out of a harmonica”

“By making music, it’s much more enjoyable than sitting at home for half an hour each day breathing in and out of a straw,” Folds said, “Most people in the class won’t do that, and they say so. But they will sit at home and practice their harmonica, some of them for hours.”

A veteran who has been learning to play the Harmonica said. “I do feel different. It made a noticeable difference. I have more endurance.” Additionally, “With the harmonica, you’re actually achieving something and hopefully getting pleasant sounds out of it. You’re getting the reward for the effort you put in.”

And thinking about breathing issues… I’ve begun trying to do the tongue in teeth, swallowing exercise as shared by a fellow PwP, since reading at the included link…

Early occurrence of inspiratory muscle weakness in …

“In Parkinson‘s disease (PD), respiratory insufficiency (including functional and muscle disorders) can impact dysarthria [difficult or unclear articulation of speech] and swallowing.”

……………………………………………..

He typed, “I used to have it. Now I do 5 minutes of “exercise” every night and it’s gone. The exercises include “Swallow 20 times while holding your tongue in place with your teeth. I recommend that you go through “the system” and spend some time with one of these swallow therapists.”

Author: suerosier

In May of 2018, I was diagnosed with Parkinson's. After researching, I believe the symptoms began to manifest themselves years prior to last year. The purpose for my blog is to share what I have learned (with an index) to save others time as they seek for answers about, symptoms, therapies [and alternative things to try], tools I use, Parkinsonisms, recipes, strategies, clinical studies, words of encouragement or just enjoy the photos or humor.

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