Five CF-Related Spring Cleaning Tasks To Add To Your To-Do List
Spring is here! We made it! The snow is melted, revealing green grass (hopefully), birds are chirping, flowers are blooming, and the days are growing longer. With spring making its arrival, that means it is time to do some spring cleaning--CF style.
If you are naturally an organized and productive person, then you are ahead of the game. However, for a lot of us, spring is the perfect time to check off the tasks that can help keep us healthy but often get overlooked during our busy lives.
Disinfect medical devices
In the midst of your spring cleaning, don’t forget to pay close attention to the CF machines you use every day such as nebulizers or airway clearance devices like the Vest. Due to all the coughing during airway clearance, these machines can be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. In my experience, doing a quick wipe down with a disinfecting multi-purpose spray on the machines themselves--paying close attention to the buttons and switches--will help minimize the spread of germs.
While you are at it, its a good time to check your nebulizer’s filter and replace it if needed. Now, you’re ready for another round of airway clearance!
Wash Vest jacket
One of my most worn pieces of clothing isn’t a favorite sweater or pair of jeans--but my inflatable Hill-Rom Vest I use for airway clearance. After more than two hours a day of wear seven days a week, the outer shell on my Vest can get pretty grimy and nasty. Gross!
Most brands of airway clearance vests have a soft outer shell that can be removed and machine washed per the instructions. I always intend to do this more than I actually do, so its a great reminder to make this a must-do this spring.
Cleaning out expired CF medications
Oh boy--the medication cabinet. Yikes! In my house, it’s an entire wardrobe filled with pill bottles, inhaled antibiotics, home IV supplies, enzymes, syringes, etc--and it’s a mess. I try to organize the wardrobe by category so that I can easily access all my supplies without thinking about it too much.
Sorting through expired medication and supplies and disposing of them properly helps me keep track of prescriptions. I never want my lack of organization to be the reason my health suffers. It’s a large, tedious--sometimes slightly depressing--job, but essential to maintaining my vital medical supply.
Sort medical documents
As much as I appreciate the detailed clinical summaries following doctor’s appointments, they tend to pile up around the house. Same goes for medical bills, insurance papers, test results, etc. (No surprise, I am less appreciative of the medical bills, truthfully.)
Even though this is probably the most boring spring cleaning task, it’s helpful to sort through medical papers and file them away appropriately. Afterwards, I try to recycle the unwanted papers (scratching out private information, of course). In return, I feel so much more accomplished and less anxious without all the paper clutter looming overhead!
Refill on-the-go medication stash
You’re almost done with your spring cleaning to-do list! The last task is to refill your medication stash in your purse, backpack, diaper bag, car, etc. Wherever you keep your on-the-go medications, it is a good idea to make sure they are fully stocked with everything you need. I hate when I am out and dig into my diaper bag looking for enzymes to find an empty bottle or no bottle at all. It’s the ultimate CF failure. Don’t be me--check your on-the-go med stash this spring so you are ready for whatever!
What CF-related spring cleaning tasks are on your to-do list this year? Share what you are up to in the comments below!
Have you (or a loved one) been experiencing any negative side effects from Trikafta?