Asthma is a chronic disease that affects the bronchial tubes, causing the airways to narrow and reducing the flow of air into and out of the lungs.
The strongest risk factors are:
1. Tobacco use.
2. Allergy from some triggers, such as chemicals, bird feathers, animal fur, pollen, dust, certain foods or liquids or preservatives.
3. Viral inflammation of the respiratory system.
4. Certain medications can trigger asthma: aspirin and other non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs.
5. Extreme Emotional arousal such as anger or fear.
6. Harsh physical exercise.
7. Hormonal changes, like the menstrual cycle of some women.
8. Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease.
Symptoms range from mild to acute, varying from one person to another:
1. Shortness of breath.
2. Chest clenching and pain.
3. Sleep disorders owing to the shortness of breath.
4. Whistling sound when breathing or exhaling.
5. Frequent cough, accompanied by sniffles and sneezing, especially in case of a viral infection of the respiratory tract.
To diagnose asthma,
Your doctor will review your medical history, family history, symptoms and triggers. Your doctor will also perform a physical examination and listen to your heart and lungs
- Educate patients and their families, including awareness of the importance of early identification and treatment of crises and crisis management.
- Avoid exposure to crisis causes.
- Vaccination against influenza virus.
- Immunotherapy is beneficial in a narrow range, when the allergen causing the crisis is known.
They include mostly bronchodilator drugs and cortisone drugs in the form of inhalation, tablets or injections used at high concentrations in time of crisis and at lower doses between asthma attacks. It should be noted that the use of cortisone in the correct doses and for the required periods is not a cause of concern for the side effects of Cortisone because in many cases it saves the patient’s life and avoid the complications of severe crises that may lead to a drop in breathing and resort to the use of artificial respirators.
Asthma patients have a crucial role to play in controlling the disease, by following these tips:
Cooperate with the doctor, and follow a comprehensive therapeutic plan, including medications, basic tests and examinations, as well as scheduled appointments for follow-up.
- Keep a medical file for you at the hospital or health center.
- Keep with you a card indicating the medications you take.
- Don’t buy medications from the pharmacy by yourself, without consulting your doctor.
- Pay attention to public health, fitness, health food and exercise.
- Quit smoking, and avoid being close to smokers, as well as the triggers of asthma.
- Take the seasonal influenza vaccine, to curb the possibility of being infected by influenza.