Asthma is a chronic condition wherein your airways, that carry air to and from lungs, become inflamed and it gets difficult to breathe. As per data, nearly 25 million Americans are affected by asthma. Although there is no cure for asthma, one can take certain precautions to avoid the triggers and manage it effectively.
Symptoms of Asthma:
Many people may not be aware of having this condition, in case their symptoms are mild. The most common symptoms of asthma include – coughing at night while laughing or exercising, chest tightness, difficulty in breathing, shortness of breath and wheezing. Asthma symptoms, even if not severe, should be taken seriously as they can be fatal if left untreated.
What causes Asthma?
What causes asthma? The most common cause of asthma trigger is allergen such as pollen, dust mites, animal dander or ragweed and irritants in the air like smoke, strong odors or chemical fumes. Exercise or a respiratory illness can also make you prone to developing the symptoms. Furthermore, crying loudly, laughing or shouting affects normal breathing patterns, which in turn can act as a trigger. According to scientific studies, rapid breathing along with strong emotions can constrict the bronchial tubes, provoking or worsening an asthma attack. Mild episodes of an asthma attack may last a few minutes and could be resolved with medication within time; whereas severe episodes can last from hours to days.
How to Diagnose Asthma?
If a person has breathing difficulties that restrict daily activities and affects the quality of life, he/she should visit an allergist for diagnosis and treatment. The doctor may take a detailed medical history, conduct a physical exam, lung function tests and chest or sinus X-ray to diagnose asthma. Depending on the severity of your symptoms and type of asthma you have, a detailed treatment plan would further be developed.
How to Cure Asthma?
The best way to stop an asthma episode is by following your treatment plan and learning your triggers. Many asthmatic people lead normal lives by properly managing their condition. For instance, many athletes have asthma, but they live a normal life and continue with their passion. This can be possible if the illness is managed effectively. Before an asthma attack, each person experience warning signs. These signs range from using the inhaler more frequently, breathlessness to chest tightness.
How to prevent Asthma?
Following are some of the other precautions you can take in order to avoid an asthma attack:
• Use allergy-proof covers on mattresses and pillows
• Avoid allowing pets in the bedroom or on furniture
• Do not keep carpets or stuffed toys in the bedroom
• Fix leaky faucets
• Avoid smoking and areas where people smoke
• Reduce stress
• Avoid outdoor activity when the air quality is not good
• Take care of your seasonal allergies