Asthma - Health Center
By Refadoc, Posted on : Thursday, 24 September 2015 - 6:54 am IST
Asthma is a chronic disease which involves the malfunctioning of the airways of the lungs. These airways, better known as the
are the ones which allow the passage of the air in and out of the lungs during the process of respiration. According to medical practitioners
, people who suffer from asthma have an inflammation in their bronchial tubes which results in the swelling of the muscles around the airways of the lungs and therefore causing the trigger of the symptoms that determine this disease. Asthmatic patients find it difficult to move in and out the air in the lungs and thus become prone to symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, and shortness of breath as well as the tightness in the chest.
People who suffer from asthma have a very close relation of the symptoms as per their physical activity. There have been instances where people are able to show the symptoms of asthma only while they are exercising. This is known as exercise induced bronchoconstriction (EIB). However, doctors
believe that these symptoms can be kept in control to make sure that people suffering from asthma can lead a happy as well as healthy life, like others around them.
People who have a family history of having asthma are more prone towards exhibiting the disease as compared to their counterparts. Also, people who suffer from asthma are also more prone towards developing allergies to different allergens in the environment. This kind of asthma is known as
. Occupational asthma is another kind of asthma, which is known to be caused due to the inhaling of the fumes, gases, dust or other potentially harmful substances or allergens around in the environment.
Childhood asthma is another kind of asthma, which impacts a large number of children all over the world as well as their families. A lot of children develop a tendency towards the development of asthma before the age of five or so. There is no known cure towards asthma, however, if it is diagnosed within time and a treatment plan is implemented by the patients towards the everyday working of the disease, not only is he able to manage the disease, but is also able to lead a healthy life cycle like all others around him.
Types of Asthma
There are different kinds of asthma which are known to be prevalent in people all around the world.
The following are some of the basic categories of the disease:
Exercise Induced Asthma:
This kind of asthma induces in people either by exercising or by any other kind of physical exertion. In this type of asthma, a lot of symptoms can be seen while exerting. In this kind of asthma, the airway of the bronchioles narrows towards a peak after 5 to 20 minutes after the exercise regime has begun. This makes it difficult for the person to catch his breath. The symptoms of this kind of asthma may consist of wheezing or constant coughing. Also the medical practitioners
, in this kind of asthma, prescribe the patient with an asthma inhaler or bronchodilator, which has known to prevent the symptoms of the disease to a greater extent.
Cough Variant Asthma:
Cough Variant asthma is the one in which a severe cough emerges out to be one of the major symptoms. Also, in this kind of asthma, there could be other reasons for the occurrence of the cough such as postnatal drip or rhinitis. This kind of asthma is the one which is most not diagnosed or left untreated. The major triggers for this kind of asthma emerge out to be infections or exercises. After the initiation of some basic tests, the diagnosis of this kind of asthma could be done easily by a medical practitioner
Allergies and Asthma:
These go hand in hand most of the times. Hay fever (allergic rhinitis) is known as the inflammation of the inner lining of the nose. This causes the increase in the sensitivity of the immune cells which causes them to release the hormone histamine and therefore, lead to the fighting of the body cells towards the allergens. Some of the major symptoms of asthma accompanying allergies can be the constant running nose, sneezing, swelling of the nasal passages, release of mucus, weepy eyes as well as a scratchy throat. Upon checking with the medical practitioner
, with the medications, this can be brought under control.
Signs and Symptoms of Asthma
One of the major symptoms of asthma
Also, a scratchy sound when you breathe can be an indicator of asthma.
Apart from that, some of the major symptoms of asthma
1. Shortness of breath
2. Tightness of the chest and pain
3. Chronic Coughing
4. Trouble during sleeping caused due to coughing or wheezing
Some of the major symptoms of asthma may emerge out to be known as asthma attacks. They are often caused due to allergies or due to an excessive exposure towards allergens which can be dust, pests, mites or even mold. Pollution, change of weather or cold air could be some of the other causes that may trigger the onset of asthma.
During exercise, the symptoms of the disease can emerge to flare up. Children suffering from asthma show the same signs as that of the adults. Sometimes, in children chronic cough can only emerge to be the sign of asthma.
For children some of the basic symptoms are as follows:
1. Creation of a whistling sound during breathing
2. Shortness of breath
3. Rapid breathing during exercise
4. Tightness of the chest
5. General fatigue
6. Problem during feeding infants
7. General avoidance of sports
8. Problems during sleeping due to coughing or difficulty in breathing.
Generally, the symptoms for asthma in children occur during the following times:
Night time or early morning
During or right after exercise
During the change of seasons
Laughing or crying
During exposure to some of the common asthma triggers
Diagnosis Of Asthma
Diagnosis of asthma is emerging to be a breakthrough. Mostly, breathing tests are conducted on patients in order to measure how well their lungs are working. One of the best known tests is spirometry.
During this test, the patient has to take a deep breath and then has to blow the exhaled air in the sensor which goes out to measure the amount of the air that the lungs can hold-in during inhalation or exhalation. This is one of the best known tests for the diagnosis of asthma.
Also, since most of the people who suffer from asthma are also prone to allergies, medical practitioners
also conduct the allergy tests in order to treat the underlying allergies that can trigger asthma in the later stages and thus avoid it, all together.
Treatment Of Asthma:
A lot of drugs and medications have emerged as the potential treatment for asthma. However, some of the following have emerged to break through the conventional treatment stereotypes and be the trendsetters:
1. Controller Medicines: Inhaled Corticosteroids such as Flovent, Ciclesonide, flunisolide etc.
2. LABA: Long Acting Beta Agonist are the symptom controllers that can help in the opening of the airways. They may include fluticasone, salmeterol etc.
3. Quick Relief Medications are the ones which are used in order to quickly relax as well as open the airways in order to relieve the symptoms during the asthma attacks. They often consist of the short acting beta agonists, such as albuterol and pirbuterol.
In any case, it is highly recommended to see a medical practitioner