Asthma is a long-term lung disease that affects millions of people in the UK today. This lung condition sometimes leads to breathing difficulties. The unique part of asthma is that it affects almost everybody, regardless of age. Today, most asthma cases often start from childhood. However, a few people also experience this condition for the first time in adulthood.
Asthma is an incurable lung disease. Once you have this disease, you have to leave with it. Although asthma isn’t deadly in its early stage, if care isn’t taken, it can become severe, leading to a life-threatening asthma attack. To avoid this, one effective solution is to rely on asthma medications, such as Ventolin Inhalers. With time, some asthma sufferers can also grow out of this illness.
What are the symptoms and causes of asthma?
Asthma symptoms vary from one patient to another. In most cases, these symptoms often come and go. However, a few asthma symptoms can persist depending on a few conditions. Asthma attacks occur mostly when the symptoms have become temporarily worse.
That said, the main symptoms of asthma are:
- Breathing difficulty
- Chest tightness
Asthma is a type of lung disease that results from the inflammation of your airways, a tube that allows the flow of air (in and out) of your lungs. As the airways get inflamed, it narrows, leading to breathing difficulty.
Irritation of the airways by cigarette smoke, cold dry air, strong smells, and other gasses can also trigger asthma symptoms. Exercise, allergens, and chest infections can also trigger symptoms.
Treatments for asthma & Complications
Although asthma is incurable, you can always manage and control your symptoms with several different asthma treatments.
In most cases, your doctor will prescribe a preventer inhaler and a reliever asthma inhaler as your asthma treatment options. Identifying and staying away from your triggers can also help you avoid asthma symptoms.
- Preventer inhalers are designed to be used every day (twice).
- Reliever asthma inhalers are designed to provide quick relief to your symptoms. They are short-term drugs that you need to use when experiencing your symptoms. They work by reducing your airway inflammation.
According to experts, asthma has several complications, which sometimes lead to death. According to the UK’s morbidity data, roughly 3 people die from asthma in the country. Death aside, other asthma complications include:
- Psychological problems, such as stress
- Disruption of your work and leisure, as you need to perform unexpected visits to your hospital.
- Absence from class and low educational performance
- Pneumonia and other chest infections
- Delay in puberty (children)
Here are a few things you should do if you currently experiencing an asthma attack:
- Dial 999 for an ambulance, especially if your inhaler is inaccessible at the time. You should also call for an emergency ambulance if you feel worse even with your preventer inhaler or reliever asthma inhaler. Call for help if you feel worse after taking more than enough puffs.
- While you wait for help to come, calmly sit down and take slow, steady breaths.
- Consider taking one puff of your blue asthma pump (reliever inhaler). Do this every 30-60 seconds until you make at most 10 puffs. For your metered-dose inhaler (MDI) a spacer is advised for effective dosage.
- An ambulance should arrive within 15 minutes. However, if there is no ambulance, the best thing is to repeat the second step.
Visit your doctor within 24 to 48 hours of getting out of your asthma attack. This way, you can always get advice on how to limit your risk of experiencing future asthma attacks. The doctor’s advice could include the following:
- Having a good inhaler technique. If you’re not sure whether your technique is adequate, you can show your GP and get corrections where necessary.
- Your asthma action plan is important. You should never joke with it, as it contains everything you need to manage your symptoms properly.
- Having regular asthma reviews is compulsory. The standard is to visit your GP at least once a year for reviews on how your condition is.
- Lastly, you need to stay away from your asthma triggers.