Keep Your Mattress Up Off Of The Floor
While you technically can use some mattresses directly on the floor, we dont suggest that for people with allergies Placing your mattress on the floor means youre closer to dirt, dust, and other germs that can more easily make their way into your sleep space. Using a mattress foundation or bed frame limits your exposure to these irritants. A sterile mattress cover may also be helpful in keeping out the riff-raff.
Your Chest Constantly Feels Tight
Minor chest tightness is common for people with asthma. But frequent and intense chest tightness can mean your severe asthma is getting worse.
Chest tightness is often the result of the muscles surrounding your airways contracting in reaction to asthma triggers. It may feel as though theres something squeezing or sitting on top of your chest. If you experience unusually intense chest tightness, particularly while sitting still, speak with your doctor.
What To Do During An Asthma Attack Without An Inhaler At Night
Follow these tips to survive a night-time asthma attack without an inhaler:
- Sit straight to keep your airways open
- Stay calm, as stress or panic can worsen your symptoms
- Take long, deep breaths to reduce symptoms
- Asthma can be triggered by dust, cigarette smoke, and other allergens. Stay away from triggers and go to any area with clean air.
- A cup of coffee can open up your airways and provide you some relief
- Seek emergency medical attention if symptoms persist
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Symptoms Of An Asthma Attack
Signs that you may be having an asthma attack include:
- your symptoms are getting worse
- your reliever inhaler isn’t helping
- you’re too breathless to speak, eat or sleep
- your breathing is getting faster and it feels like you can’t catch your breath
- your peak flow score is lower than normal
The symptoms will not necessarily occur suddenly. In fact, they often come on slowly over a few hours or days.
Children may also complain of a tummy or chest ache
Symptoms Of Lying Down Asthma In Children
First, the symptoms of onset. Children usually have respiratory tract infection one or two days before the onset of the disease, which is similar to general bronchitis. However, the onset of the disease in older children is more acute, and most of them break out at night, which is closely related to the climate and the causes of night changes, It also has an essential relationship with indoor dust and mites that may accumulate more and adrenaline secretion is less at night. A few hours or a day after the attack, the patient’s condition will be somewhat relieved.
Third, intermittent symptoms in attack period. This kind of patients do not have any difficulty in breathing, the appearance looks like normal children, but they will feel chest discomfort, because there are factors that lead to bronchial infection, when the infection to the outside world, there will be an immediate outbreak of asthma. The sputum of children with bronchial asthma is generally colorless, viscous and transparent, sometimes there will be some bubbles, but the occurrence of infection will lead to sputum yellowing, and it is found that there are a lot of eosinophils in the sputum after the hospital instrument examination. Most children’s sputum is not easy to cough up, the amount is relatively small, when the characteristics of remission, sputum will also have a significant improvement.
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Why Does Asthma Get Worse At Night
Asthma that gets more pronounced at night is nighttime asthma or nocturnal asthma. Nocturnal asthma causes symptoms like chest tightness, shortness of breath, cough, and wheezing at night, creating sleep difficulty at night and irritability during the day. These problems can affect the persons overall quality of life.
Signs You Actually Have Severe Asthma
Breathing is just one of those things you take for granted until it feels like every inhale or exhale is a struggle. Unfortunately, people with severe asthma have to deal with breathing issues way more often than anyone should, and it can be completely terrifying.
Asthma is a respiratory condition that affects the airways that extend from your nose and mouth to your lungs, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute . When youre exposed to triggers like animal fur, pollen, mold, exercise, and respiratory infections, these airways can narrow, restricting your airflow. This can then make the muscles surrounding your airways constrict, making it even harder to breathe, and cause your airways to produce more mucus than normal, further compounding the problem. All together, this can lead to asthma symptoms like shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing , and chest tightness or pain, according to the NHLBI.
Like most health conditions, asthma severity runs along a spectrum, Emily Pennington, M.D., a pulmonologist at the Cleveland Clinic, tells SELF. Some people have cases where they experience minor symptoms here and there . Others can have asthma that is basically an ever-present problem and might result in scary asthma attacks, which is when symptoms ramp up in severity and can even become life-threatening.
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What Are The Best Sleeping Positions For Asthma
Individuals suffering from asthma have difficulty breathing and managing the symptoms with their daily routine. However, researchers have suggested that laying down triggers episodes of asthma. It not only disrupts good sleep, but also leads to sleeping disorders that have severe health-related complications. The episode triggered while lying down or sleeping comes under nocturnal asthma. Taking medications such as bronchodilators, oxygen therapy, and corticosteroids have proven to reduce the severity of the episode and reduce the triggering capacity of allergens or pollutants.
Certain sleeping positions have been suggested to ease up the symptoms of asthma, making it easier for an individual to get a good sleep. Some of the positions are:
1. Lying On The Back:
Lying on ones back with shoulders and neck elevated has proven to be effective in case of a nocturnal asthmatic attack. Elevating ones neck and shoulders with two to three or more pillows helps open up the airways as we sleep. When sinuses drain more during the night, sleeping with pillows under the shoulders provides better drainage due to gravity, making breathing easier and shortening and avoiding asthmatic attacks.
2. Lying On The Left Side: The Best Sleeping Position For Asthma.
In addition, sleeping on the side prevents the tongue from falling back and moving down into the throat, hindering breathing, proving to be an effective position to sleep on.
3. Lying On Back With Head Elevated:
4. Sitting Position:
Why Do People Get Asthma
Contact with allergens, certain irritants, or exposure to viral infections as an infant or in early childhood when the immune system isnt fully mature have been linked to developing asthma. Exposure to certain chemicals and dusts in the workplace may also play a significant role in adult-onset asthma.
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Tips To Sleep Better With Severe Asthma At Night
Nocturnal asthma is associated with poor sleep quality. This condition of sleeplessness and its effects are worse for children. The average total sleep quality score of children affected by asthma is 51, which is above the clinical cut off of 41, but it indicates the pervasive sleep disturbances among this population.
Here are a few tips that can help you sleep better with asthma at night:
How Is Nocturnal Asthma Treated
There is no cure for nighttime asthma, but daily asthma medications, such as inhaled steroids, are very effective at reducing inflammation and preventing nocturnal symptoms. Since nocturnal asthma or nighttime asthma may occur anytime during the sleep period, asthma treatment must be sufficient to cover these hours. A long-acting bronchodilator delivered in an asthma inhaler can be effective in preventing bronchospasm and symptoms of asthma. If you suffer from nocturnal asthma, you may also benefit from a long-acting inhaled corticosteroid. If you suffer with GERD and asthma, ask your doctor about medication that reduces acid production in the stomach. Avoidance of potential allergy triggers such as dust mites, animal dander, or feathers in a down comforter may also be very helpful in preventing allergies and asthma and nocturnal asthma attacks.
In addition, using your peak flow meter, you can monitor how your lung function is altered throughout the day and night. Once you notice this altered pattern of lung function, talk with your doctor about a plan to resolve your nighttime asthma symptoms. According to your type of asthma and asthma severity , your doctor can prescribe treatment to help you resolve your nighttime asthma symptoms so you can sleep like a baby.
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Does Breathing Cold Air Help Asthma
People with asthma have airways that are more sensitive, and prone to inflammation. Cold air can lead to dryness in the airways, the tightening of the muscles around the airways and impair the normal function of the airways to clear inhaled substances. All of this can lead to an increase in asthma symptoms.
You Sometimes Have Trouble Speaking
If you find it difficult to speak a full sentence without having to pause to take a breath, you should make an appointment with your doctor. Trouble speaking is usually the result of an inability to take enough air into your lungs to allow you to let it out at the slow, deliberate rate required for speech.
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Take Action Now To Lower Your Risk Of An Asthma Attack
If youre getting more asthma symptoms its a sign that your airways are getting more inflamed and narrow. This makes it harder for air to get through and means an asthma attack is more likely.
The sooner you can treat the inflammation in your airways, the sooner you can lower your risk of an asthma attack.
See your doctor today
- Ask the receptionist for an urgent same day appointment. Tell them your asthmas getting worse and you need to see a GP or asthma nurse for urgent advice to avoid having an asthma attack.
- If you cant get an urgent same day appointment, or your GP surgery is closed, . They may be able to arrange for you to be seen at a walk-in centre or by an out of hours doctor.
Other Nocturnal Asthma Triggers
Although the causes of nocturnal asthma may be at least partially linked to sleeping positions, nighttime asthma symptoms may also be influenced by:1,3
- Allergen exposure. House dust mites, pet dander, and exposure to other allergens either a few hours at bedtime or while in bed could trigger asthma symptoms
- Natural body processes. While at rest, muscles relax, and the upper airway narrows. This may increase the potential of having breathing issues at night.
- Hormones. Some studies suggest that a decrease in cortisol levels at night may also constrict the airway.
- Cold air. Although sleeping in a cool room may feel more comfortable, the dry air with less moisture can make asthmatics more susceptible to symptoms.
- Not following a daytime treatment plan. Managing asthma can be a full-time job. If steps arent taken during the day to manage symptoms, it can make asthmatics more vulnerable during sleep.
It can be hard to pinpoint whether asthma and sleeping positions are directly related or if these other factors also play into nighttime asthma attacks. Some trial and error may need to happen before asthmatics can narrow down and begin to address the source.
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Goodbye To Nocturnal Triggers
Whatever triggers your asthma symptoms during the day could also become problematic at night. Dust mites are known to exacerbate night-time asthma symptoms, and they love to get buried in the bedcovers. So, its a good idea to vacuum every corner of your bedroom regularly and to wash your bedding on a high heat.
Is the temperature in your room too hot or too cold? For some people temperature can be a night-time trigger. If youre experiencing a dry cough, you could consider installing a humidifier. Another common night trigger can be a high pollen count but thats easily fixed by keeping windows shut firmly and taking an allergy medication.
How Asthma Is Treated
While there is no cure for asthma, there are a number of treatments that can help control the condition.
Treatment is based on two important goals, which are:
- relieving symptoms
- preventing future symptoms and attacks
For most people, this will involve the occasional or, more commonly, daily use of medications, usually taken using an inhaler. However, identifying and avoiding possible triggers is also important.
You should have a personal asthma action plan agreed with your doctor or nurse that includes information about the medicines you need to take, how to recognise when your symptoms are getting worse, and what steps to take when they do so.
These symptoms are often worse at night and early in the morning, particularly if the condition is not well controlled. They may also develop or become worse in response to a certain trigger, such as exercise or exposure to an allergen.
Read our page on the causes of asthma for more information about potential triggers.
Speak to your GP if you think you or your child may have asthma. You should also talk to your doctor or asthma nurse if you have been diagnosed with asthma and you are finding it difficult to control the symptoms.
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Does Vicks Help With Breathing
Hoecker, M.D. Vicks VapoRub a topical ointment made of ingredients including camphor, eucalyptus oil and menthol that you rub on your throat and chest doesnt relieve nasal congestion. But the strong menthol odor of VapoRub may trick your brain, so you feel like youre breathing through an unclogged nose.
What Can Make Asthma Worse
Your asthma can flare up for different reasons. If youre allergic to dust mites, pollens or molds, they can make your asthma symptoms get worse. Cold air, exercise, fumes from chemicals or perfume, tobacco or wood smoke, and weather changes can also make asthma symptoms worse. So can common colds and sinus infections.
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Sleep On Your Back With Your Head Elevated And A Pillow Under Your Bent Knees
Another option for back sleepers who have asthma is to sleep on your back with your head slightly elevated and a pillow under your knees. This position can improve circulation while also keeping your body stable throughout the night, which can help you breathe easier and sleep better.
The key to finding the right sleep position for you is to experiment with what are considered the best sleeping positions for asthma patients and make notes. Pick a position, stick with it for a week or so, and record your observations about your asthma symptoms and sleep quality. Then try another position and do the same.
Using the same sleep position for multiple nights is helpful, as it allows your body to get comfortable with that position so that the newness of it isnt a factor in your sleep quality.
A note about right-side sleeping: Research has determined that sleeping on your right side increases resistance in the airways within the lungs. A possible cause of this difference between left-side and right-side sleep positions is that sleeping on your right side may increase whats called vagal tone, which activates the nervous system in a way that causes airway constriction. Not everyone experiences this effect, but you should keep it in mind as you experiment with sleep positions.
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Youre Coughing And Wheezing More During The Day
Another sign that your severe asthma may be getting worse is if youre coughing or wheezing more often. Talk to your doctor about adjusting your treatment plan if you constantly feel like youre about to cough. If you find yourself wheezing with a whistle-like sound more than once a day, seek your doctors opinion as well.
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How Is Asthma Diagnosed
Asthma can be hard to diagnose. To find out if you have asthma, your health care provider takes your health history, does a physical exam and listens to your breathing.
You also may get a lung function test called spirometry. This is a test that checks how well your lungs work. During the test, you take a deep breath and exhale into a machine called a spirometer. This machine measures the amount of air you breathe in and out. It also measures how fast you can breathe. When youre pregnant, normal changes in your body can make you short of breath. This test can help your provider know if shortness of breath is a common complication of pregnancy or if its caused by asthma.
Why Asthma May Trigger Gerd
Just as GERD can make asthma symptoms worse, asthma can exacerbate and trigger symptoms of acid reflux. Pressure changes that occur inside the chest and abdomen during an asthma attack, for example, are believed to aggravate GERD.
As the lungs swell, the increased pressure on the stomach may cause the muscles that usually prevent acid reflux to become lax. This allows stomach acid to flow back up into the esophagus.
Heartburn is the main GERD symptom that adults face. In some people, GERD can occur without causing heartburn. Instead, symptoms may be more asthmatic in nature, such as a chronic dry cough or difficulty swallowing.
Your asthma may be connected to GERD if:
- it began in adulthood
- symptoms get worse following a large meal or exercise
- symptoms occur while drinking alcoholic beverages
- symptoms happen at night or while lying down
- asthma medications are less effective than usual
It can be difficult to identify symptoms of GERD in children, especially if theyre very young. Infants under age 1 will often experience symptoms of acid reflux, such as frequent spitting up or vomiting, with no harmful effects.
In general, infants and young children with GERD will:
- become irritable
- arch their backs often
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