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What is Asthma?

Asthma is a chronic (long-lasting) inflammatory disease of the airways. In those susceptible to asthma, this inflammation causes the airways to spasm and swell periodically so that the airways narrow. The individual then must wheeze or gasp for air. Obstruction to air flow either resolves spontaneously or responds to a wide range of treatments, but continuing inflammation makes the airways hyper-responsive to stimuli such as cold air, exercise, dust mites, pollutants in the air, and even stress and anxiety.

Signs and Symptoms of Asthma

Some of the common symptoms of asthma are constant coughing, a feeling of tightness in the chest and difficulty in breathing. These symptoms may not be continuous but become severe with the passing of the days. In some cases the symptoms may be mild while in some cases it is very severe. Medical attention is compulsory. Some patients need to be treated in the hospital. The symptoms become severe at morning and night. Sometimes a case of eczema may also be the reason behind asthma. Among the children the symptoms are severe during night. Asthma can affect anybody but it is found more among the children. If a lady smokes during pregnancy then the unborn baby runs a risk of developing asthma. Active as well as passive smoking leads to asthma.

Causes of Asthma


Asthma causes has variety of aspects that somehow triggers panic asthma attack penetrating the sufferer. Most common asthma causes concludes of environmental factors like pollution, chemical smoke, strong chemical odor, dust particles and smoke. Many times domestic usable things having strong fragrances like perfumes, talcum powder, varnish, oil paints and spices added to food provoke asthma causes. Apart from these regular asthma causes, a severe reason to influence asthma attack is lung infection, which can be viral or bacterial. Natural allergens like pollen discharged from trees and plants may be feasible causes for asthma. But these causes are seasonal and tend to appear once a year. Parents suffering from breath shortness incline their children to suffer right from child hood.

Treatment for Asthma

Asthma can be prevented by adopting the following methods.These asthma natural treatment methods help in curing the problem sometimes even permanently.

  • Decreasing the protein content: If protein is decreased to ten percent of the daily calorie intake then it proves beneficial for asthma.
  • Elimination of milk products: If milk products are avoided, the person suffers from asthma symptoms less.Milk can be substituted by other sources of calcium.
  • Organic treatment: It is good to eat organically treated and grown vegetables.
  • Oil reduction: It has been seen that if polyunsaturated vegetable oils, margarine, hydrogenated oils are reduced then the trans-fatty acids are avoided.This to relieve the person of asthma.It is good to use olive oil as main fat.
  • Omega-3: Consumption of Omega-3 fatty acids aids in relaxing the lungs and thus helps as an asthma natural treatment method. Arachidonic acid and GLA or gamma linolenic acid increases the availability of beneficial fats in our body such as EPA or eicospentanoic acid.
  • Spices: Ginger and turmeric is good anti-inflammatory agents.These reduces the inflammation in the lungs.
  • Chest exercise : Some of the nerves and muscles around the chest have got into a mode of repetitive pattern.It is required to break these patterns to aid the person get relief from asthma.Osteopathic manipulation and a deep tissue massage called Rolfing are good methods to help asthma relief.
  • Respiratory irritants: Smoke, molds, volatile chemicals, etc are all respiratory irritants.It is good to install a proper air filtration system which would clear the air of pollution. Asthma greatly brings about a change in the person if the person goes to an area with lesser pollution. Treatment for GERD: GERD is an acid reflux disease which causes a regurgitation effect in the person. It has been seen that this could be a hidden reason for asthma. Thus if this digestive process is solved then asthma can be cured.
  • Consumption of fruits and vegetables: It has been found that women who had vegetables like tomatoes, carrots and leafy vegetables had lower rates of asthma than men who had these vegetables. A daily consumption of fruits and vegetables in childhood is a good way of preventing asthma.
  • Vitamins: Vitamins like vitamin C and minerals like manganese should be consumed for asthma relief.
  • Exercises : Sometimes asthma natural treatment includes plain exercises as the cure.

Complications of Asthma

Asthma may cause a number of complications, including:

  • Symptoms that interfere with sleep, work or recreational activities
  • Sick days from work or school during asthma flare-ups
  • Permanent narrowing of the bronchial tubes (airway remodeling) that affects how well you can breathe
  • Emergency room visits and hospitalizations for severe asthma attacks
  • Side effects from long-term use of some medications used to stabilize severe asthma

Proper treatment makes a big difference in preventing both short-term and long-term complications caused by asthma.

Prevention of Asthma

Periodic assessments and ongoing monitoring of asthma are essential to determine if therapy is adequate. Patients need to understand how to use a peak flow meter and understand the symptoms and signs of an asthma exacerbation.

Regular follow-up visits (at least every six months) are important to maintain asthma control and to reassess medication requirements.

Patients with persistent asthma should be given an annual influenza vaccine.

Questions To Ask Your Doctor About Asthma Treatment

  • Is there any further testing that can be done?
  • What further treatment do you recommend?
  • Will you be prescribing something new?
  • What are the side effects?
  • What is an MDI (inhaler)?
  • What is a spacer?
  • Am I using my MDI (inhaler) correctly?
  • What is a peak flow meter?
  • How do I use it?
  • How often?
  • I have heard that some medications are second-line treatments. What does that mean?

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