What is Asthma? Symptoms, Causes and Types of Asthma

Asthma is a common disease these days. Knowing about this illness can help to take the preventive measures and stay healthy.

Asthma is a chronic disease, where the airways in the lungs or bronchial tubes, are swollen. The air passes in and out of the lungs through the airways. In Asthma, These airways get more swollen and the muscles around them contract, which makes it difficult for the air to go in and out of the lungs. As breathing becomes difficult, it causes symptoms like coughing, shortness of breath and wheezing.

Some people have minor asthma, while some have major. People suffering from major asthma, can face hurdles in their daily activities or even go through a life-threatening asthma attack. Asthma is a disease which cannot be cured, but it can be brought under control. People having asthma can work with their doctor to understand and control the illness.

Asthma can be caused by the environmental and genetic factors. Elements which can trigger allergies can become a cause of asthma. It is different for every person, but these are some of the sources which can trigger asthma.

  • Respiratory illness such as cold, flu and other diseases.
  • Outside airborne particles like pollen, dust, pet dander, mold spores can cause allergies and asthma.
  • Air pollution, smoke, cigarette smoke is a major reason of asthma.
  • Although exercise is beneficial, sometimes, it can trigger asthma. It is called Exercise-induced asthma.
  • Cold air
  • Certain medicines and food additives can cause asthma. Medicines like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen are some examples. Sulfites and preservatives added to beverages and food products.
  • Changing weather, such as cold air, wet and windy weather.
  • Stress

Symptoms of Asthma

Symptoms of asthma are different for different people. If the symptoms are not strong enough, several people affected by asthma, won’t even know they have asthma. People having asthma can either have symptoms all the time or only irregular asthma attacks which can be triggered while doing exercise. To know if you have asthma, here are the symptoms.

  • Coughing at night
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Tightness or pain in the chest
  • Having trouble while sleeping due to wheezing or shortness of breath
  • Coughing while laughing or exercising
  • Wheezing or whistling sound while breathing, especially while exhaling. This is a common sign in children having asthma.
  • Cold which settles in the chest
  • When suffering from a respiratory illness like a cold or flu, having intense coughing attacks.

If you have these symptoms, it is better to consult a doctor. Asthma attacks can be life-threatening, a doctor can tell you the extent your illness and provide solutions to bring it under control.

It can be overwhelming being diagnosed with any disease. But, the more knowledge you have, the better you can tackle the health issue. Knowing concrete information can help you in getting the right treatment at the right time. You won’t believe in some myths and panic. Having information puts your mind at ease as you know the exact seriousness of your problem.

Severe asthma can sometimes be an interfering factor in your daily life. But, when you know what types of asthma you have and what is the treatment, you can live a better life.

Types of Asthma

Allergic Asthma

This is one of the types of asthma is caused because of allergies a person has. Air pollutants, pollen, mold, dust, pet dander, smoking can induce the allergies. Which in turn can set off asthma? Even food allergies such as milk, cheese and sugar can trigger asthma. The exposure to these allergens become the reason of development of asthma symptoms.

Exercise-induced Asthma (EIA)

EIA symptoms develop during or after exercising. Any kind of physical exertion or sports activity brings on coughing, wheezing, tightness in the chest and difficulty in breathing. These symptoms are reduced when the person stops the activity or exercise.

Types of Asthma

Occupational Asthma

This asthma happens when something in the workplace starts an asthma attack. Dust particles, chemicals or smoke can cause allergy and then asthma attack. The person working at such place can be allergic to the dust or the chemicals and while working with these, the attacks can be triggered. They should talk to the doctor to know the cause of the allergy and avoid it.

Cough variant Asthma

A cough is the most important or the only symptom in the Cough Variant Asthma. It can be distinguished by the dry hacking cough. It can affect the children and adults, both. While there are medicines to improve the condition, Vitamin D can also be helpful in improving asthma.

Nocturnal Asthma

This is nighttime asthma, where experience the symptoms while sleeping. It is common to a cough, wheeze, and trouble breathing at night. It is also very dangerous as according to studies, most asthma-related deaths happen at night. If your symptoms start worsening by evening, talk to your doctor and check the remedies for it.

Doctors will give you medicines and tell you about the treatment for every types of asthma, but it is good to take extra precautions. Follow the treatment told by the doctor and take some steps at home. Home remedies and changes in the lifestyle can ease your asthma and bring relief to you.

Check with your doctor regarding these home remedies and start doing it.

Lessen the Dust

Clean your home and workplace daily. Less dust, lessen your chances of allergies and reduces exposure to dust. Remove the carpet and install hardwood flooring. Regularly wash the cushion covers, curtains, blinds, and sheets.

Air Conditioner

Using air conditioner can reduce the airborne pollen, which enters the house. It reduces the humidity and exposure to dust mites.

Pet Dander

If you are allergic to pet dander, avoid animals with furs and feathers.

Cover Your Nose

While venturing out, if you are allergic to cold or dry air, cover your mouth and nose. This will help in reducing the risk of asthma.

Regular Exercise

If you have exercise-induced asthma, consult your doctor about it. But, other than that, exercising daily can help in controlling asthma symptoms or attacks. Being active can keep your heart and lungs healthy. Also, maintain a normal weight, which would assist in preventing health issues. Being overweight can increase the risk of asthma.

Medical Marijuana

MMJ helps asthma by decreasing spasms, and this includes the bronchioles in the lungs and the diaphragm, which is a muscle! This is a nice choice for any restrictive lung disease, although I would recommend using edibles rather than smoking.


Be Your Own Best Doctor

Dr Jess

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