Kid using asthma inhaler

Ease the Wheeze

While there are various factors that make an individual susceptible to developing asthma, age is not one of them. Anyone can develop asthma at any point in life, but treatment can help to control asthma symptoms so patients of any age are able to live normal, active lives.
By the team at Speedoc,
May 15, 2024

Asthma is a chronic respiratory disease that affects millions of people worldwide. Characterised by inflammation and narrowing of the airways, asthma can cause episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing. These symptoms can vary in severity and frequency, making asthma a condition that requires careful management and understanding.

Asthma “culprits”

Asthma is believed to result from a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Common triggers include:

Allergens: Pollen, dust mites, pet dander, and mould

Irritants: Smoke, pollution, strong odours from perfumes or household cleaners, and chemical fumes

Respiratory infections: Colds and flu can exacerbate symptoms

Physical activity: Exercise-induced asthma is common

Weather conditions: Cold air, humidity, and sudden weather changes

Symptoms of Asthma

Asthma symptoms can vary from mild to severe. Here’s what to look out for:

  • Coughing

  • Wheezing: A high-pitched whistling sound when breathing

  • Shortness of breath: Feeling unable to get enough air in your lungs

  • Chest tightness: Feeling like something is squeezing or sitting on your chest

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Managing Asthma

While there is no known cure for asthma, it can be effectively managed with the right approach. Key strategies include:

  1. Medication:

    • Quick-relief inhalers- Used during an asthma attack to provide immediate relief by relaxing the muscles around the airways.

    • Long-term control medications- Taken daily to reduce inflammation and prevent symptoms.

  2. Avoiding triggers: Identifying and minimising exposure to asthma triggers is crucial. This might involve using air purifiers, avoiding smoking, and managing allergies effectively.

  3. Asthma care plan: Working with a healthcare provider to create a personalised plan that outlines how to manage asthma daily and handle worsening symptoms or attacks.

  4. Regular monitoring: Keeping track of symptoms and lung function helps in adjusting treatment plans timely.

  5. Annual flu shots: Getting vaccinated against influenza prevents serious complications that could lead to an asthma attack.

Woman using inhaler for asthma symptoms

Living with Asthma

If you have been diagnosed with asthma, living with this chronic condition requires a proactive approach. Here are some tips for managing asthma day-to-day:

  • Stay informed: Educate yourself about asthma and stay updated on the latest treatments and management strategies.

  • Healthy lifestyle: Maintain a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and manage stress to keep your body in the best condition.

  • Routine check-ups: Regular consultation with a healthcare provider ensures that your asthma management plan is working and allows for adjustments as needed.

  • Emergency preparedness: Always have a quick-relief inhaler accessible and ensure friends and family know how to help in case of an asthma attack.

With the right knowledge and tools, asthma is a manageable condition. By understanding your triggers, following a treatment plan, and staying vigilant for symptoms, you can lead a healthy and active life despite having asthma.

Always consult a healthcare professional for personalised advice and treatment options tailored to your specific needs.

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