Preventing An Asthma Flare
Although asthma is incurable, you can prevent an impending asthma attack by following certain measures, including the following:
- Identify your asthma triggers and avoid them. Steer clear of allergens, irritants, and pollutants in the air and respiratory infections.
- Pet dander, scales from the skin, hair, feathers, and dried urine or saliva can aggravate your allergies. Keep your pet at a distance if you have a pet allergy.
- Disinfect your house regularly. Mold growth can be a reason for an allergy flare-up. It has been observed that Aspergillus fumigatus was present in patients with severe asthma.
- Wash your bedding and clothing regularly. Keep your house dirt-free.
- Keep track of the weather conditions before going out to avoid contracting an allergy.
- Get yourself administered with flu and allergy shots to prevent a flare-up of symptoms.
- Install a humidifier and air purifier in your room.
- Quit smoking and avoid exposure to passive smoke.
Is It Safe To Use Complementary And Alternative Asthma Treatments
Most people think of herbs as being natural and therefore safe to take. However, many herbs have not been thoroughly tested, and the FDA does not regulate them. This means that the purity and amount of herb in each dose–and therefore its safety–cannot be guaranteed.
Some herbs used to treat asthma have been found to interact with other medicines. For example, Gingko biloba, used to decrease inflammation in the lungs, could cause bleeding problems in people who are also taking the blood thinner warfarin . Licorice root, used to soothe the lungs of asthmatics, can increase blood pressure. Ephedra has been used as a bronchodilator but has also been linked to some unexplained deaths.
It is very important that you always inform your doctor if you are taking any herbs or dietary supplements. Some herbs may worsen your asthma or other medical condition, or they may interfere with prescribed medicines you are taking.
Home Remedies For Asthma
1. Best Foods for Treating Asthma
Eating a healthy diet supplies asthma sufferers with antioxidants and nutrients to combat environmental toxins, control inflammatory responses and reduce dietary triggers. Eating a wide variety of foods can ensure that you or your child gets all the nutrients needed to support strong immunity. There have been numerous studies that show consuming the right foods can be the one of the best home remedies for asthma.
Some of the most beneficial foods to include in your asthma diet plan are:
- Brightly colored carotenoid foods: This compound gives fruit and vegetables their orange or red color and can help reduce asthma attacks. Carotenoids are the basis of vitamin A, which is involved in the maintenance of healthy mucous membranes that line the air passageways. Severity of asthma correlates with low vitamin A, so increase your intake of things like root veggies, sweet potatoes, carrots, leafy greens and berries. A study of 68,000 women showed that those who ate more tomatoes, carrots and leafy greens had much lower rates of asthma and that people prone to asthma tended to have low levels of circulating carotenoids in their blood.
- Foods with folate : Folate reduces allergic reactions and inflammation. It might be capable of lowering wheezing by regulating inflammatory processes as well. High-folate foods include green leafy vegetables, beans and nuts.
2. Avoid Foods that Can Make Asthma Attacks Worse
3. Supplements for Asthma
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Caffeinated Tea Or Coffee
The caffeine in black or green tea and coffee is believed to help treat asthma. It works similarly to the popular asthma medication theophylline, which opens up the airways.
A 2010 research review, the most recent available, found that caffeine may slightly improve breathing function in people with asthma for up to 4hours.
Still, there isnt enough evidence to show whether caffeine can improve asthma symptoms.
Complementary Therapies And Asthma: 4 Essential Tips
If you fancy trying a complementary therapy to help your asthma or manage triggers like anxiety or stress, make sure you cut any risks by:
Complementary therapies should only ever be an add on to your existing asthma treatment, says Dr Andy Whittamore. Taking your preventer inhaler as prescribed even if you feel well keeps down the inflammation in your airways. And it means youre less at risk of symptoms and an attack when you come across different triggers.
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What Is The Main Cause Of Asthma
A number of factors are thought to increase your chances of developing asthma. They include
Top Home Remedies For Asthma: Do They Actually Work
Living with asthma can be demanding, between recognizing potential asthma attack triggers to managing day-to-day symptoms. Those suffering from asthma are often looking for more tips and solutions beyond their physicians office to manage their condition.
Many online organizations and forums list different herbs, fruits and other natural substances that are supposed to relieve asthma symptoms, but do some of these actually work? In this post, we take a look at the scientific evidence behind some of the internets most popular natural asthma remedies.
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Video: Yoga Teacher Julia Explains How Yoga Is Helpful For Asthma
Transcript for Yoga teacher Julia explains how yoga is helpful for asthma
0:00 Im Julia White. Im a yoga teacher and aromatherapist, and I specialise in teaching yoga to people with asthma.
0:06 When I was younger, growing up, my younger sister had asthma and it was managed,
0:11 but she used to get quite bad asthma attacks so either the doctor would be called out or she would be hospitalised.
0:17 And then, one day, she had an asthma attack. She was at home alone and she had to call the ambulance.
0:23 The ambulance came, they tried to revive her and they couldnt so she died of an asthma attack at the age of seventeen.
0:28 At the age of thirty, I was then diagnosed with asthma myself.
0:33 Obviously, went to the doctor, got diagnosed, was given various inhalers, managed it that way,
0:39 but then realised I had to do something about it myself, as well as taking my medications.
0:46 And thats when I decided to take a really hard look at my life and decided to train to become a yoga teacher.
0:54 The good thing about yoga is that anyone can do yoga. You know, yoga isnt just an exercise.
0:59 The most important part for me is the breathing.
1:01 If you can connect with your breath, and move with your breath, then thats essentially what yoga is.
1:09 And the other thing is the posture because when we have asthma attacks, and you hunch and obviously,
1:23 So, the other thing with yoga is the posture, so it helps open up the chest, which helps to open up the breathing.
Natural Home Remedies: Asthma
Asthma is serious and should be discussed with your doctor. But there are also home remedies you can try to reduce the severity and frequency of your attacks, and to help manage your symptoms when they happen.
Source: Adapted from 1,801 Home Remedies, Readers Digest
An asthma attack can occur when an irritant usually a common substance like smoke, cold or dry air, pollen, mold, or dust mites meets a set of temperamental lungs. Hormonal fluctuations, stress, and anger can also trigger an attack. Sometimes theres no apparent cause. Your difficulty in breathing occurs because the bronchi, the tubes that allow oxygen into your lungs, go into spasms. Accompanying them may be coughing and tightness in the chest. The spasms trigger the release of histamine and other chemicals that cause inflammation and the production of airway-clogging mucus.
For severe asthma attacks the kind of tightness, wheezing, and shortness of breath that can be really frightening most people do just what the doctor recommends. Often, that means quick action with an inhaler containing a drug such as albuterol. If thats what you use, and it works, dont give it up. And always have your doctors telephone number near at hand in case of severe attacks. But for non-emergencies, youll want to figure out ways to help yourself breathe easy.
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Homeopathic Remedies For Asthma Attack
1. Arsenicum album : A person who feels really worn-out and restless needs this medication, even more so if he/she feels difficulty in breathing, especially while lying down. The problem might be accompanied by frothy white fluid during coughing.
2. Carbo vegetabilis : When a person feels extremely weak or has a feeling of getting faint, this medication is used. Other symptoms may include burping, frequent passing of gas, and an upset stomach.
3. Chamomilla : When a person becomes overexcited or very angry, experiences dry cough with irritation, this medication is helpful. The person also becomes hypersensitive along with the above symptoms.
4. Ipecacuanha : When coughing eventually leads to vomiting, this homeopathic medication is suggested. Other symptoms include accumulation of mucus in the air passages and difficulty in coughing out.
5. Natrum sulphuricum : When a person feels so weak that he/she holds his/her chest while coughing, this medication is recommended. Conditions become worse in the early morning, and the person finds it difficult to breathe while getting up from bed.
Other useful homeopathic medications include Nux vomica, Pulsatilla, and Spogia tosta.
What Happens During Asthma Attacks
Asthma attacks may start as minor but if not managed effectively, can turn dangerous. During an asthma attack, the airways become swollen and constricted more than usual. Breathing properly becomes quite tough. Some signs of an asthma attack are:
- Wheezing while breathing in and out
- Extremely rapid breathing
Read More on Asthma Causes & Triggers
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Make An Asthma Action Plan
If you don’t have one already, work with your doctor to create an asthma action plan. This is something you talk about and write down. It helps you tell how well-controlled your asthma is and what to do about it. Your action plan might include:
- How much medicine to take and when
- A list of your triggers and ways to avoid them
- What to do when you have specific symptoms of trouble
Addressing And Controlling Allergies
Dr. Meadows recommends all of his allergic asthma patients undergo allergy testing. Testing also makes us aware of what could cause an asthma attack, he says. By knowing your triggers, you can take steps to avoid them whenever possible.
If you have allergies that are non-avoidable, such as being allergic to a family pet, I recommend getting allergy shots, Dr. Meadows says. Since its not easy to avoid all allergens, allergy shots are a natural way to help dampen the immune systems response and lessen your asthma symptoms.
For some allergies, theres an easier solutionavoidance. Its possible to avoid allergens such as smoke from a fireplace or bonfire. These triggers are particularly harmful to people with asthma, even if their symptoms are well-controlled, Dr. Meadows says.
If allergies are a trigger for your asthma, Zyrtec may help, but the mainstay of any action plan should be inhalers and seeking medical attention when needed, Dr. Parikh says.
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Medical Treatment For Asthma
Medications to treat asthma can be aimed at providing quick relief or controlling the condition in the long term. Also, immunotherapy is advised to prevent a flare-up of allergies that can trigger an asthma attack. The treatment method and drug dosages may differ between adults and children .
The medications for asthma fall in the category of bronchodilators. These are administered in the form of an inhaler, nebulizer, and pills. The inhaler is a pump that can be used as an immediate rescue in the event of an attack as it lets the bronchodilator enter your lungs through the oral route as you inhale.
The mode of action is expanding the narrowed airways of the lungs to smoothen the flow of air and facilitate easy breathing. In addition, bronchodilators play a role in clearing away mucus and allowing its free movement, preventing obstruction that may be a hindrance in breathing.
Using The Papworth Method
The Papworth method has been used since 1960 to help people with asthma. It is a type of breathing and relaxation technique. It makes use of the nose and diaphragm to develop breathing patterns that will suit the asthma patient. These breathing patterns can then be used while engaging in activities that can possibly flare up your asthma. Papworth method is a way of controlling over-breathing that is basically rapid and shallow breaths taken at the top of the chest.
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Make Changes To Your Diet
There is no specific diet for asthma patients but the exclusion and inclusion of a few elements in your diet can make a considerable change. Being overweight has been known to affect and trigger asthma symptoms. Include lots of fruits and vegetables in your diet. To reduce the inflammation around your airways, consider sources rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and beta-carotene. Omega 3 found in salmons, mackerels are also known to help with inflammation. If any particular food seems to make your symptoms much worse, make a note and avoid consuming it.
When To See A Doctor
If your asthma is uncontrolled, seek medical advice as soon as possible to prevent a dangerous breathing problem. If youre having warning signs such as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath and chest pain, especially at night or on exertion, its important to see a board-certified allergist or pulmonologist, Dr. Parikh says. Then, check back in with your provider any time you have a change in symptoms. Your treatment plan can be adjusted as needed.
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Top Home Remedies For Asthma
Roughly 34 million Americans now have asthma, about 7 million to 8 million of which are children. Asthma is behind 12.8 million missed school days and 10.1 million missed work days in the U.S every single year. In addition, asthma costs the U.S. about $14.7 billion a year in medical costs, prescription drugs and lost productivity leading many people to search for home remedies for asthma.
Heres something that might surprise you: Although asthma medications can help control symptoms in the case of an emergency attack, they can actually sometimes make asthma symptomseven worse long term. Most asthma medications also have a host of side effects due to how they affect the endocrine system and the immune system. Research shows some asthma drugs might contribute to problems including mood changes, acne, yeast growth and weight gain plus over time they might hinder normal immune functions that make allergic and asthmatic reactions more frequent.
What are some effective, holistic ways of treating asthma that can help prevent attacks instead? Home remedies for asthma that dont require taking prescription medications or even using inhalers include limiting irritant exposure, reducing food allergies, improving gut health, supplementing with vitamin D or getting more naturally from the sun, and maintaining a healthy weight.
Create An Asthma Action Plan
Dr. Firshein knows and understands the causes, symptoms, and risk factors for asthma, as documented in his two books: Reversing Asthma and Your Asthma-Free Child.
Dr. Firshein will work with you to create a treatment plan based on your symptoms and triggers, as well as the severity of your asthma. Your treatment should be flexible, and it can change based on fluctuations in your symptoms.
Call Dr. Firshein or request an appointment online to schedule a consultation. When you come to see Dr. Firshein, make sure to bring a list of your symptoms and triggers so he can best assist you.
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Breathing Techniques To Help Your Asthma
Theres quite a bit of evidence to suggest that doing breathing exercises like Buteyko can mean fewer asthma symptoms and not needing to use your reliever inhaler as often.
You still need to take your preventer medicine as prescribed to help with inflammation in your airways.
The Buteyko method aims to reduce asthma symptoms by teaching you how to breathe slowly and gently through your nose rather than your mouth. This keeps the air warm and moist and your airways less sensitive.
The Papworth method teaches you how to breathe using your nose and diaphragm . Its taught by physiotherapists and includes relaxation training and how to develop breathing patterns to suit whatever activity youre doing.
Getting started on breathing exercises
Breathing retraining is not a quick fix: it takes a bit of time and commitment to learn the techniques and put them into practice. Ask your GP or asthma nurse about whats available in your area.
Are There Natural Remedies For Asthma Attacks
The typical treatment for an asthma attack is a quick-acting inhaler with medication. Sit upright and take slow, steady breaths. Try to stay calm. Follow the asthma action plan that youâve set up with your doctor. If your breathing doesnât get better or if youâre so short of breath that you canât talk, get medical help right away.
Some breathing exercises can help with symptoms of an asthma attack.
- Pursed-lip breathing. This slows your breathing and helps hold your airways open longer so your lungs work better. With your mouth closed, breathe in slowly through your nose. Then breathe out through your mouth, with your lips pursed like youâre whistling, for twice as long.
- Belly breathing. This technique uses the same steps as pursed-lip breathing. But as you breathe in, focus on the movement of your belly. Picture it filling with air like a balloon. It may help to keep your hands on your belly so you can concentrate on the air going in and out.
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