Lung damage is a side effect of asthma. Asthma is one of the most prevalent chronic disorders in children, but it can also affect adults. Wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and coughing are symptoms of asthma that occur at night or in the early morning. If you have asthma, it's something you have constantly, yet attacks only happen when your lungs are bothered. Although there are many potential causes of asthma, we do know that genetic, environmental, and occupational variables have been connected to its occurrence. You are more likely to have asthma if someone in your close family does. Allergy-related asthma can be greatly influenced by "atopy," the genetic propensity to develop an allergic disease. But not all cases of asthma are allergic asthma. The development of asthma has been linked to environmental factors including mold or moisture, some allergens like dust mites, and secondhand smoke. Asthma can also be brought on by a viral lung infection and air pollution.
When someone who has never had asthma starts having symptoms due to exposure to something at work, this is known as occupational asthma. This can occur if you are exposed to irritants like wood dust or chemicals repeatedly at low levels or all at once at high levels while working, or if you acquire an allergy to something at work like mold. Particularly in young children under the age of five, it can be challenging to diagnose asthma. To determine whether you have asthma, have a doctor examine your lungs and look for allergens.
A doctor will inquire if you frequently cough, particularly at night, during a checkup. Additionally, he or she will inquire as to whether your breathing issues are worse by exercise or by particular seasons. The doctor will then inquire about wheezing, chest tightness, and colds that linger longer than 10 days. If anyone in your family currently has or has ever had asthma, allergies, or other breathing issues, he or she will inquire. The doctor will also inquire about your household and whether you have missed any work or school or have any difficulties with certain tasks.
Coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, and breathing difficulties can all be symptoms of an asthma attack. Your body's airways, which are the channels via which air travels to your lungs, are the site of the attack. The airways in your lungs narrow as air passes through them, just as the branches of a tree are narrower than the trunk. Your lungs' airways enlarge on the sides and contract during an asthma attack. Your lungs receive less air, and the mucus your body produces clogs up the airways.
By being aware of the symptoms of an asthma attack, avoiding triggers, and adhering to your doctor's recommendations, you can manage your condition. When your asthma is under control:
- you won’t have symptoms such as wheezing or coughing,
- you’ll sleep better,
- you won’t miss work or school,
- you can take part in all physical activities, and
- you won’t have to go to the hospital.
When you are exposed to "asthma triggers," which can differ greatly from person to person, you may get an asthma attack. Learn how to avoid your triggers by being aware of them. When you are unable to evade your triggers, be alert for an attack. Tobacco smoke, dust mites, outdoor air pollution, cockroach allergen, pets, mold, smoke from burning wood or grass, and illnesses like the flu are some of the most typical triggers. To manage your asthma, take your medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor and avoid anything that can set off an attack. Not everyone who has asthma takes the same medication. Some medications can be inhaled, while others must be taken orally. Medicines for asthma might provide either short-term relief or long-term control. Medicines for immediate treatment manage asthma attack symptoms. Visit your doctor if you find yourself using your quick-relief medications more frequently to determine whether you require a different medication. Long-term control medications aid in fewer and milder attacks, but they are of no assistance when an asthma attack is occurring. Although side effects from asthma medications are possible, they are typically minor and pass quickly. Discuss the negative effects of your medications with your doctor.
Keep in mind that you can manage your asthma. Create your own asthma action plan with the assistance of your doctor. Make a decision regarding who should have a copy of your plan and where they should keep it. Even if you are symptom-free, continue taking your long-term control medication.