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Can Stress Cause Asthma Nhs

Is It An Asthma Attack Or A Panic Attack

World Asthma Day: Emotional Stress Can Cause Asthma: Dr Himanshu Garg, Artemis Hospital

Because a panic attack has some of the same symptoms of an asthma attack, its important to know your own asthma symptoms and how to spot when theyre getting worse. This can help you to feel more confident about telling them apart.

Signs that youre having an asthma attack:

  • Cough
  • Wheeze
  • Low peak flow
  • Your blue reliever isnt helping, or you need to use it more than every four hours.

Signs that youre having a panic attack:

  • Dizziness
  • Unable to complete a sentence.

What Are The Causes Of Asthma

Asthma symptoms are commonly triggered by allergies brought on by pollen, dust mites, feathers and animal fur. Smoke fumes and general air pollution can also act as a trigger, and having a cold or the flu can also set it off.

Certain medications are also known to trigger asthma. This is particularly true of anti-inflammatory painkillers such as aspirin and ibuprofen.

Asthma can even be triggered by exercise and heightened emotional states such as excessive laughter or stress.

What Are The Consequences Of Long

A little stress every now and then is not something to be concerned about. Ongoing, chronic stress, however, can cause or exacerbate many serious health problems, including:

  • Mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and personality disorders
  • Obesity and other eating disorders
  • Menstrual problems
  • Sexual dysfunction, such as impotence and premature ejaculation in men and loss of sexual desire in both men and women
  • Skin and hair problems, such as acne, psoriasis, and eczema, and permanent hair loss
  • Gastrointestinal problems, such as GERD, gastritis, ulcerative colitis, and irritable colon

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How Does Stress Affect Your Health Generally

Prolonged or chronic stress can have damaging health consequences on your immune system and your brains cerebrovascular system. Stress can weaken your immune system and increase your susceptibility to colds, flu and fatigue.

Harvard Health says: “Abundant evidence shows that chronic stress chips away at physical health, pushing blood pressure to dizzying heights and harming the heart. It plays a role in diabetes, asthma, and gastrointestinal disorders.”

Harvard Health states elevated levels of stress in your body can cause consistently high blood pressure. Over time, high blood pressure can cause your heart muscle to weaken and thicken, as it forces your heart to pump blood faster. This can lead to heart failure.

The BMJ reveals chronic stress can lead to the development of disorders such as dementia, Parkinsons disease and motor neuron disease. It may also influence the likelihood of developing multiple sclerosis. Feeling stressed out can cause increased sensitivity to pain Chronic stress can lead to increased levels of pain and in turn, chronic pain can leave you feeling stressed out. This works as a vicious cycle of stress and chronic pain, leaving little room for relief.

Disrupted sleep induced by stress can also exacerbate your pain. Sleep deprivation can increase your sensitivity to pain by affecting how your brain perceives pain. The inextricable relationship between pain and sleeplessness is referred to as painsomnia.

Is Anxiety Making Your Asthma Worse

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If youre going through a stressful time in your life, such as a divorce or redundancy, or youre feeling anxious even if you dont know why, this can make your asthma symptoms worse. This may mean you have to take asthma medicines more often, and may have to go to hospital or see your GP more frequently after having had an asthma attack.

Taking steps to get back on track emotionally is important because it can be easy to get stuck in a vicious circle: you feel anxious, anxiety makes your asthma symptoms worse, and you then feel more worried and anxious and on it goes.

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What Is An Asthma Action Plan

An asthma action plan is a plan agreed by you with your doctor or nurse. The plan enables you to make adjustments to the dose of your inhalers, depending on your symptoms and/or peak flow readings. The plan is tailored to individual circumstances. The plan is written down, usually on a standard form, so you can refer to it at any time. Research studies suggest that people who complete personal asthma action plans find it easier to manage their asthma symptoms and that their plan helps them to go about their lives as normal. Asthma UK provides asthma action plans which you can download from

Why Do We Feel Anxious

Feeling anxious is the bodys way of preparing us either to make a run for it or put up a fight .

For our ancestors, this response was useful in helping us survive life-threatening attacks by wild animals.

For us, most problems we come across in daily life arent dangerous, but our bodies can still react as though were under attack. Some people have symptoms of anxiety even when theyre just thinking about something worrying or frightening.

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Relaxation Exercises To Manage Stress With Asthma

A 2-minute Relaxation Exercise. Concentrate your thoughts on yourself and your breathing. Take a few deep breaths, exhaling slowly. Mentally scan your body. Notice areas that feel tense or cramped. Quickly loosen up these areas. Let go of as much tension as you can. Rotate your head in a smooth, circular motion once or twice. Roll your shoulders forward and backward several times. Let all of your muscles completely relax. Recall a pleasant thought for a few seconds. Take another deep breath and exhale slowly. You should feel more relaxed.

Mind Relaxation Exercises. Close your eyes. Breathe normally through your nose. As you exhale, silently say to yourself the word “one,” a short word such as “peaceful,” or a short phrase such as “I feel quiet” or “I’m safe.” Continue for 10 minutes. If your mind wanders, gently remind yourself to think about your breathing and your chosen word or phrase. Let your breathing become slow and steady.

Deep Breathing Relaxation. Imagine a spot just below your navel. Breathe into that spot and fill your abdomen with air. Let the air fill you from the abdomen up, and then let it out, similar to deflating a balloon. With every long, slow breath out, you should feel more relaxed.

Show Sources

SOURCES:Ã American Academy of Family Physicians: “Stress: How to Cope Better with Life’s Challenges.” The National Women’s Health Information Center: “Stress and Your Health.” Ã Barclay, L. Thorax, June 2007.

How Can I Manage And Treat My Eib

World Asthma Day: Emotional Stress Can Cause Asthma: Dr Himanshu Garg, Artemis Hospital_Part 3

With proper management, you can enjoy exercise and achieve your full potential. Proper management requires that you:

  • Take steps to prevent symptoms
  • Take medicine before exercising
  • Do a proper warm up for 6 to 10 minutes before periods of exercise or vigorous activity
  • Carefully watch your respiratory status before, during and after exercise

Children With EIB Inform teachers and coaches if you have a child with EIB. Kids with EIB should be able to take part in activities they just may need medication before an activity.

Athletes With EIB If you are an athlete, disclose your medicines and adhere to standards set by the U.S. Olympic Committee. Request a list of approved and prohibited medications from the Committee hotline at 1-800-233-0393.

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What Is An Asthma Attack

Asthma is caused by underlying inflammation and constriction of your airways or bronchial tubes. Both inflammation and constriction can make it hard to breathe. This causes symptoms like wheezing, chest tightness, and coughing.

When you have an asthma attack, your bronchial tubes constrict even further, making it difficult to breathe. Wheezing may be audible, and you may have tightness or a rattling sensation in your chest. Depending on the severity of your asthma attack, your symptoms could last from several minutes to hours, or even days.

Quick-relief medications can reduce your symptoms and stop the attack. But if your symptoms continue to get worse, you may need to seek emergency medical attention.

An asthma attack is brought on by triggers that irritate your lungs. These can include:

  • allergens, such as pollen, animal dander, and dust mites
  • chemicals, including perfume, smoke, and cleaning products
  • exercise, especially if its more strenuous than what youre used to
  • extreme heat or cold
  • feelings of detachment from yourself and your surroundings
  • feeling like youre losing control
  • fears of dying

A panic attack can peak after 10 minutes, and then often begins to subside. While a panic attack can occur in the middle of a state of severe anxiety, these symptoms can also occur unexpectedly when you feel calm.

Symptoms Of A Severe Asthma Attack

If you suddenly experience a severe asthma attack, then you may experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  • A bluish tint to your lips, face or fingernails
  • Feeling that you need to stand up or sit in order to try and breathe more easily
  • Feeling confused or agitated
  • Being unable to speak in full sentences
  • Feeling very short of breath and unable to inhale or exhale fully
  • Rapid breathing
  • Symptoms that dont get better after using a reliever inhaler.

With a very severe asthma attack, the usual symptoms of wheezing or coughing might not worsen. This is because your airways may be so affected that you cant get enough air in or out of your lungs to cause wheezing sounds or make you cough.

It is a medical emergency and you should go to a hospital immediately. Compared to mild asthma attacks that may only last a few minutes, severe asthma attacks can last from hours to days and may be life-threatening if left untreated.

Assessment tools

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Asthma Symptoms In Children

Most children with asthma have symptoms before they turn 5. In very young children, it may be hard for parents, and even doctors, to recognize that the symptoms are due to asthma. The bronchial tubes in infants, toddlers and preschoolers are already small and narrow, and head colds, chest colds and other illnesses can iname these airways, making them even smaller and more irritated.

The symptoms of pediatric asthma can range from a nagging cough that lingers for days or weeks to sudden and scary breathing emergencies.

Common symptoms to watch for include:

  • Coughing, especially at night
  • A wheezing or whistling sound when breathing, especially when exhaling
  • Trouble breathing or fast breathing that causes the skin around the ribs or neck to pull in tightly
  • Frequent colds that settle in the chest

Your child might have only one of these symptoms or several of them. You may think its just a cold or bronchitis. If the symptoms recur, thats a clue that your child might have asthma. In addition, symptoms may worsen when your child is around asthma triggers, such as irritants in the air or allergens like pollen, pet dander and dust mites.

Asthma Causes And Triggers

Housing disrepair causing health problems

Asthma is caused by swelling of the breathing tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs. This makes the tubes highly sensitive, so they temporarily narrow.

It may occur randomly or after exposure to a trigger. Common asthma triggers include:

  • allergies to house dust mites, animal fur or pollen, for example
  • smoke, pollution and cold air
  • exercise
  • infections like colds or flu

Identifying and avoiding your asthma triggers can help you keep your symptoms under control.

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How Can I Cut The Risk Of Stress Affecting My Asthma

Its impossible to cut out all stress from our lives. But you can cut the risk of it making your asthma worse.

Here are three top tips to help your asthma when stress is a trigger:

  • Stick to your asthma routine. Stress is most likely to trigger asthma symptoms if your asthma is not well managed in the first place. So, make sure youre sticking to your asthma medicines as prescribed, taking your inhaler correctly, going for regular asthma reviews, and using a written asthma action plan.
  • Talk to your GP or asthma nurse. They can support you in looking after your asthma well, even when stress levels are high. For example, they may suggest you take more of your asthma medicines for a while to keep your asthma steady during times of stress. They can also signpost you to counselling and wellbeing services.
  • About Shortness Of Breath

    Sudden shortness of breath, or breathing difficulty , is the most common reason for visiting a hospital accident and emergency department.

    It’s also one of the most common reasons people phone 999 for an ambulance.

    It’s normal to get out of breath when you’ve overexerted yourself, but when breathlessness comes on suddenly and unexpectedly, it’s usually a warning sign of a medical condition.

    The information below outlines the most common reasons for:

    • sudden shortness of breath
    • long-term shortness of breath

    This guide shouldn’t be used to self-diagnose your condition, but should give you an idea of what’s causing your breathlessness.

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    What Is Severe Asthma

    Severe asthma is a type of asthma that does not respond well to standard asthma treatments. The symptoms by definition, are more intense than regular asthmatic symptoms and can last for prolonged periods. Sufferers of severe asthma often find their symptoms persistent and difficult to control.

    Having severe asthma can have a major impact on daily life, affecting everyday habits, work and social life.It can affect both children and adults, and can develop at any age. However, its a lot less common than a standard asthma diagnosis, affecting less than 10% of people.

    Although it can be difficult to cope with, and it can take time to find the right treatment combination, it can be effectively managed. Its important that you look after yourself carefully by taking your medication exactly as prescribed, having regular asthma reviews, understanding your asthma triggers and communicating with your healthcare team, so they know when and how to adjust your medication regime.

    What Are The Symptoms Of Stress

    World Asthma Day: Emotional Stress Can Cause Asthma: Dr Himanshu Garg, Artemis Hospital_Part 1

    Stress can affect all aspects of your life, including your emotions, behaviors, thinking ability, and physical health. No part of the body is immune. But, because people handle stress differently, symptoms of stress can vary. Symptoms can be vague and may be the same as those caused by medical conditions. So it is important to discuss them with your doctor. You may experience any of the following symptoms of stress.

    Emotional symptoms of stress include:

    • Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and moody
    • Feeling overwhelmed, like you are losing control or need to take control
    • Having difficulty relaxing and quieting your mind
    • Feeling bad about yourself , lonely, worthless, and depressed
    • Avoiding others

    Physical symptoms of stress include:

    • Low energy
    • Being pessimistic or seeing only the negative side

    Behavioral symptoms of stress include:

    • Changes in appetite — either not eating or eating too much
    • Procrastinating and avoiding responsibilities
    • Increased use of alcohol, drugs, or cigarettes
    • Exhibiting more nervous behaviors, such as nail biting, fidgeting, and pacing

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    How Long Does It Last

    Asthma is a long-term condition for many people, particularly if it first develops when youre an adult.

    In children, it sometimes disappears or improves during the teenage years, but it can come back later in life.

    The symptoms can usually be controlled with treatment. Most people will have normal, active lives, although some with more severe asthma may have ongoing problems.

    It’s Easy To Get The Care You Need

    See a Premier Physician Network provider near you.

    If you suffer from asthma, you know that the feeling of not being able to breathe is very frightening.

    For some people, asthma and anxiety go hand-in-hand. Its often difficult to unravel the connections between the two. Thats because both conditions cause similar symptoms, especially shortness of breath.

    You might experience anxiety about when your next asthma attack will occur. The stress of an asthma attack can even lead to a panic attack.

    If you know what triggers your asthma or anxiety symptoms, you can take steps to reduce the frequency of attacks and maybe even prevent them.

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    How Do You Treat Asthma

    The typical treatment for asthma involves using an inhaler which helps to ease the symptoms. They fall into two main categories inhalers that help relieve the symptoms of asthma, when you are already breathless, and those which are used to prevent the symptoms from coming back. Preventative inhalers are used regularly, on a daily basis, even when you feel fine. In some cases a GP may recommend tablets instead of, or as well as, inhalers.

    Its very important that you understand how to use your inhaler properly. There are several different types of inhaler device, and while it might seem obvious about how to use it, many people need help to understand how to get the best out of them. Its recommended that you take a few minutes to review your inhaler technique, even if you feel fine. Your local pharmacist, asthma nurse or GP can show you. You can also check out this selection of online videos for each type of device:

    Why Do You Get Tension Headaches

    Everything to Know About Asthma During Asthma Awareness ...

    Tension headaches are classed as primary, which means that there isnt always a reason for them, and they are not caused by a medical issue or illness. Many people experience tension headaches, without knowing what exactly caused the headache to start.

    There are certain circumstances that can trigger a headache however these may differ from person to person. You may already know what triggers your headaches, especially if they follow a pattern or you have them regularly.

    Tension headache triggers include:

    • Straining your eyes by squinting
    • Looking at computer screens for too long
    • Incorrect posture, can cause tension to build in your muscles
    • Not being physically active

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