If there is something that is essential for all human beings, it is fresh air. Fresh air is the vitality of humans. With that, if you have been diagnosed with asthma, you surely know the importance of fresh air and what can happen to your chest and body when your asthma kicks in! With that in mind, we, at Healthier Me Today, want to share some important factors of Asthma, things to know, causes, and prevention!
What is Asthma?
Asthma is known as a chronic condition that can affect the air passage within the lungs. In short, the airways that allow for deep breathing become blocked, inflamed, and narrowed. In this, you start to feel a shortness of breath, and if it continues, you may start to develop anxiety or a panic attack. Certain things can set off asthma, from allergens to pollution, and many more. With this, if you start noticing a shortness of breath, or you may consecutively start feeling lightheaded, or as if you may not be getting enough oxygen into your system, it is important to contact your health care provider ASAP.
Risk Factors of Asthma
There are numerous risk factors that can trigger your asthma. Let’s discuss a couple of them!
- Cigarette Smoke While In The Womb – Cigarette exposure while in the womb may have an affect in proper lung growth and development. When this is the case, asthma can be determined within a few years of a child being born.
- Microbes – Microbes also have a deep affect that can lead to asthma. Microbes in the environment, especially during early life, can affect the way an individual’s immune system develops, which can lead to an increase risk of developing asthma.
- Poor Air Quality – This is known as one of the most common factors of asthma. Pollutants in the air can further add to the potential risk of an individual developing asthma. Traffic related pollution, as well as allergens such as pollen, particles, or dust!
Does Family History Play A Part?
This is a common question that is often asked, and in that, we say, “yes!” Genes do play a part in the potential risk of an individual develoing asthma. The reason for this is because we receive our genes from both our parents, and if a parent is has a predisposition to developing asthma, they may pass that gene down. In this, it is important to know your families history to better understand your own health and potential risks.
Signs & Symptoms
When it comes to asthma, the signs and symptoms can be subtle or obvious. Here are a couple!
- Deep dry coughing, especially at night or in the early morning.
- Shortness of breath, often when walking or light exercise.
- Wheezing, which is known as a light whistling sound when you breath.
- Chest tightness for prolonged periods at a time.
Diagnoses For Asthma
If you are at risk for asthma or you start noticing some of the signs and symptoms above, it is important to contact your doctor! In this, they may conduct some tests that will determine whether you have an asthma. Here are a few of the diagnostic tests they may perform.
- Pulmonary Function Tests – in this test you may be asked to breath in and out through a tube that is connected to a computer and measures the speed and flow of air in your breath.
- Spirometry Test – This will measure how fast air moves through your passageways while you relax after inhaling medicine to relax your muscles.
- Peak Expiratory Flow – This is another test that will measure how fast you can blow air out!
Treatment For Asthma
After performing specific tests, always with the supervision of your doctor, you may have to go on treatment for asthma. In this, your doctor will create a specific plan curated just for you to ensure that you can live and manage your asthma properly. From an inhaler to short term medicines such as corticosteroids to reduce inflammation, the treatment depends on your healthcare provider. Treatments ma include:
- SABAs (Short-Acting Beta2-Agonists
- Oral and Intravenous Corticosteroids
- Short-acting Anticholinergics
Asthma can be lived with, managed, and can also with long term medicine and proper treatment, can actually be minimized and cured completely. With this in mind, if you feel that you may suffer from asthma, reach out to your healthcare provider!
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