· Asthma is a disease that affects your lungs. It is one of the most common long-term diseases of children, but adults can have asthma, too.
· Asthma causes wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing at night or early in the morning.
· The strongest risk factors for developing asthma are inhaled substances and particles that may provoke allergic reactions or irritate the airways.
· Medication can control asthma. Avoiding asthma triggers can also reduce the severity of asthma.
· Appropriate management of asthma can enable people to enjoy a good quality of life.
v Symptoms of asthma:-
1. Coughing, especially at night
3. Shortness of breath
4. Chest tightness, pain, or pressure
v The Causes
The fundamental causes of asthma are not completely understood. The strongest risk factors for developing asthma are a combination of genetic predisposition with environmental exposure to inhaled substances and particles that may provoke allergic reactions or irritate the airways.
What Causes an Asthma Attack?
An asthma attack can happen when you are exposed to “asthma triggers.” Your triggers can be very different from those of someone else with asthma. Know your triggers and learn how to avoid them. Some of the most common triggers are:
Smoke is unhealthy for everyone, especially people with asthma. If you have asthma and you smoke, quit smoking. “Secondhand smoke” is smoke created by a smoker and breathed in by a second person. Secondhand smoke can trigger an asthma attack.
2- Dust Mites
Dust mites are tiny bugs that are in almost every home. If you have asthma, dust mites can trigger an asthma attack. To prevent attacks, use mattress covers and pillowcase covers to make a barrier between dust mites and yourself. Remove stuffed animals and clutter from your bedroom. Wash your bedding on the hottest water setting.
3- Outdoor Air Pollution
Outdoor air pollution can trigger an asthma attack. This pollution can come from factories, automobiles, and other sources. Pay attention to air quality forecasts on radio, television, and the Internet and check your newspaper to plan your activities for when air pollution and humidity levels will be low.
4- Cockroach Allergen
Cockroaches and their droppings can trigger an asthma attack. Get rid of cockroaches in your home by removing as many water sourses, food waists and crumbs as you can. Vacuum or sweep areas that might attract cockroaches at least every 2 to 3 days.
Pets can trigger an asthma attack by their fur droplets and bugs found on their bodies. If you think pets may be causing you attacks, you better avoid them. If you one, at least keep it out of the asthma patient bedroom. Bathe pets every week and keep them outside as much as you can. People with asthma are not allergic to their pet’s fur only but also to their droplets and bugs found on their bodies , so trimming the pet’s fur will not help your asthma.
Breathing in mold can trigger an asthma attack. Get rid of mold in your home to help control your attacks. Humidity can make mold grow. An air conditioner or dehumidifier will help you keep the humidity level low.
7- Smoke From Burning Wood or Grass
Smoke from burning wood or other plants is made up of a mix of harmful gases and small particles. Breathing in too much of this smoke can cause an asthma attack. If you can, avoid burning wood in your home.
8- Other Triggers
Infections linked to influenza (flu), colds, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) can trigger an asthma attack.
Sinus infections, allergies, breathing in some chemicals, and acid reflux can also trigger attacks.
Burning incense or candles, of any kind, can be a source of particulate matter, which may trigger an asthma attack in some individuals.
Physical exercise; some medicines; bad weather, such as thunderstorms or high humidity; breathing in cold, dry air; and some foods, food additives, and fragrances can also trigger an asthma attack.
v How Is Asthma prevented and Treated?
Control your asthma and avoid an attack by taking your medicine exactly as your doctor tells you and by staying away from things that can trigger an attack.
Everyone with asthma does not take the same medicine. Some medicines can be breathed in, and some can be taken as a pill. Asthma medicines come in two types : quick-relief and long-term control. Quick-relief medicines control the symptoms of an asthma attack. If you need to use your quick-relief medicines frrequently, visit your doctor to see if you need to modify your treatment. Long-term control medicines help you have fewer and milder attacks, but they don’t help you while you are having an asthma attack.
Asthma medicines can have side effects, but most side effects are mild and soon go away. Ask your doctor about the side effects of your medicines.
v How to control asthma?
You can control your asthma by knowing the warning signs of an asthma attack, staying away from things that cause an attack, and following your doctor’s advice.
· When you control your asthma:
1. •you won’t have symptoms such as wheezing or coughing,
2. •you’ll sleep better,
3. •you won’t miss work or school,
4. •you can take part in all physical activities, and
5. •you won’t have to go to the hospital.
Remember – you can control your asthma. With your healthcare provider’s help, make your own asthma action plan. Take your long-term control medicine even when you don’t have symptoms.