I read Noreen's post and thought about what she posted....I thought to myself what is an advocate? So, that new Webster's dictionary got dug out and this is what it said under advocate: one who argues or pleads for a cause or proposal. The definition for advocating: recommend.
I think I fall under the later and Noreen under the former. Although, I think I might fall under the former in that I really want recently diagnosed alpha's to take that diagnosis seriously...very much opposite of me! I recently tallked to an Accredo Therepeutics rep and retold her of my first reaction to my diagnosis: "Oh, It's just like diabetes. You just manage it." What a blase' response!! Her reaction was: "NOW, Wait just a MINUTE!". I will always wonder if I would have taken it seriously back in 1995 or 1996 when my sister Johanna told us we(all her siblings) should all be tested if I could have added 10 or more years to my life......I had just started back up smoking after having been quit for 4.5 years!
Noreen worked to get us all organized to champion the cause of creating awareness and giving those of us alphas a means to educate ourselves/tools to extend our lives by creating the Alpha-pack 501(3) c. Because of her tireless work this year and at least the previous year here in Wisconsin Govenor Jim Doyle made a proclamation........May is Alpha1 awareness month!!!
I would like to ask everyone who reads this post to consider wearing a peach colored ribbon during May. By wearing a peach ribbon you will help raise awareness about the silent killer Alpha1. I will follow within the next few days with facts to sink your teeth in!
I'm up way past my bedtime BUT, this post was definitely worth my time!!
The Top10 Things You Should Do If You Test Positive For Alpha1
- Have A List Of Questions When You See a Doctor About Your Alpha1(If you try to remember the questions you want to ask you may forget half of them)
- Learn To Breathe Effectively
- Limit Or Eliminate Your Alcohol Consumption
- Don't Be Afraid To Be Proactive About Your Alpha1
- Get Plenty Of Rest(You will likely have a higher oxygenation level)
- Avoid Sick People(You have a lower immune system than most people)
- Drink Plenty Of Water
- Eat Healthy/Avoid Processed Food(Carbonated beverages)
- Start A Careful Exercise Program/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program(Your muscles will become more efficient so they won't use as much oxygen and if you have surgery you will likely recover quicker as well)
- Stop Smoking