How Is Asthma Prevented And Treated
There is no cure for asthma. Control symptoms by taking asthma medicines and avoiding your triggers. With proper;treatment;and an;asthma management plan, you can reduce your symptoms and enjoy a better quality of life.
Talk to your health care provider about your asthma symptoms and be sure to discuss any changes in your asthma management or status.
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Uncontrolled Or Frequent Symptoms
Uncontrolled asthma is earmarked by daily symptoms, such as shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing. It is associated with respiratory disturbance, sleep disturbance, and nighttime flare-ups, all of which can cause daytime tiredness.
One 2013 on children found that those who had frequent asthmatic symptoms experienced daytime fatigue more often than those with occasional or no symptoms. This finding was independent of each childs sleep quality or the amount of time spent in bed.
Study Design And Participants
In this retrospective, observational, cross-sectional study, all participants underwent a comprehensive health status assessment between April 2014 and April 2018. The assessment was part of usual outpatient care in the Amphia Hospital in Breda and the Radboud University Medical Centre in Nijmegen . General practitioners referred these patients for the first time to the outpatient consultation of a chest physician in a secondary care setting because of persistent complaints with an unsatisfactory response to the treatment offered in primary care. Eligibility criteria were diagnosis of asthma and data available regarding gender, age, fatigue, and lung function. Patients with an asthma exacerbation in the previous three months and/or aged <18 years were excluded. The Medical Ethical Committee of the Radboudumc approved this retrospective study of data collected during usual care .
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Tips From Other People With Asthma
If your asthma is keeping you awake at night, youre not alone.
In our recent sleep survey, 45% of people told us they have difficulty sleeping because of their asthma at least once a week, and nearly 50% said theyd had an asthma attack at night.
Here are some of the things that people tell us help them get a good nights sleep, which our nurses agree might be helpful:
- Ease a dry throat with a glass of water
- Try a nasal saline rinse or;use decongestants to unblock a stuffy nose
- Take regular exercise
- Relax in the evening using mindfulness, meditation, breathing exercises or yoga
- Avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evening.
If you find reading about other peoples experiences useful, or have some advice to share, join the conversations on our HealthUnlocked forum.
Is your child disturbed by symptoms at night? Read our advice on asthma and your childs sleep.
Differences Between Asthmatic Patients With Normal Mild And Severe Fatigue
Patients with severe fatigue were more likely to be female and younger and were more likely to be obese, more likely to have had 1 exacerbations in the last 12 months, had a lower educational level, a worse exercise capacity, lower forced vital capacity , more dyspnea , a worse disease-specific QoL, and worse asthma control . Details can be found in .
Proportion of asthmatic patients with normal/mild dyspnea or severe dyspnea after stratification for the degree of fatigue. A statistically significant association between degree of fatigue and degree of dyspnea was observed, 2 = 56.229, V = 0.325, and p< 0.001. MRC: Medical Research Council; n: number of subjects; V: Cramers V.
Proportion of asthmatic patients with controlled , partially controlled , and uncontrolled asthma after stratification for the degree of fatigue. A statistically significant association between degree of fatigue and degree of asthma control was observed; 2 = 93.073, V = 0.265, and p< 0.001. ACQ: Asthma Control Questionnaire; n: number of subjects; V: Cramers V.
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What Is Nocturnal Asthma
Asthma is a long-term, chronic respiratory disease, caused by the inflammation of the airways. When this condition worsens overnight, we call it nocturnal asthma or nighttime asthma. Regardless of the type of asthma you have, including allergic, non-allergic, occupational, and exercise-induced asthma, nocturnal asthma can occur more than once a month.
Over the past decade, the prevalence of asthma in adults and children has increased in the United States. The California Health Interview Survey states that 15.9% of asthma cases were reported in Orange County in 2015-2017. Although there is no cure for asthma, the symptoms can be managed through long-term medications and short-term quick-relief inhalers. A few home remedies and other tips can also help patients with nocturnal asthma sleep better.
Anxiety And Breathlessness: A Vicious Circle
Its no wonder that many people have found themselves being worried about their breathing due to the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus. Sometimes anxiety related to stressful life situations can cause similar breathing trouble as asthma. Thats because a feeling of anxiety might make you to breathe more rapidly or to take more shallow breaths without even being aware of it. That loss of breath can, in turn, add to your anxiety, creating a vicious circle of increasing difficulty breathing.
Calming techniques like meditative breathing or progressive muscle relaxation can aid you in understanding the difference between anxiety-provoked breathing difficulties and those which are caused by asthma or some other lung conditions. Those techniques can also be useful during an asthma attack to help you slow down your breaths and reduce your stress levels.
If you are worried about having been exposed to the coronavirus disease or are experiencing additional symptoms, you should contact your healthcare provider straightaway.
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Feeling Good Night And Day
Why do asthma symptoms tend to get worse during the night? For most people, its a combination of factors including increased exposure to allergens, cooling of airways, and even just the act of lying down flat, and going to sleep.
When we sleep our airways tend to get narrow which may cause increased airflow resistance, or wheezing. This can trigger coughing in some people, which further tightens the airways, and could even lead to an asthma attack.
If youre having sleeping difficulties, it could be a reminder to cut down on those late nights. However, nocturnal flare ups could also be a sign that your asthma is not being correctly controlled.
If sleep disruption persists for more than a few days, it would be wise to check in with your doctor to see if your medication needs adjusting.
Alterations In Chest And Neck Movements
An asthma attack symptom that signals a medical emergency is called a retraction. It is the word used to describe the action of the chest and neck sinking in with every breath when its hard to breathe.
Retractions are symptoms of severe asthma that signal theres not enough air reaching the lungs. It is a medical emergency. Call 911 and seek emergency medical help immediately.
Asthma symptoms in children that signify breathing problems may be getting worse include:
- Lack of appetite
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What Does Asthma Feel Like
Asthma is characterized by inflammation of the bronchial tubes with increased production of sticky secretions inside the tubes. People with asthma experience symptoms when the airways tighten, inflame, or fill with mucus. Common asthma symptoms include:
- Coughing, especially at night
- Shortness of breath
- Chest tightness, pain, or pressure
Still, not every person with asthma has the same symptoms in the same way. You may not have all of these symptoms, or you may have different symptoms at different times. Your asthma symptoms may also vary from one asthma attack to the next, being mild during one and severe during another.
Some people with asthma may go for extended periods without having any symptoms, interrupted by periodic worsening of their symptoms called asthma attacks. Others might have asthma symptoms every day. In addition, some people may only have asthma during exercise, or asthma with viral infections like colds.
Mild asthma attacks are generally more common. Usually, the airways open up within a few minutes to a few hours. Severe attacks are less common but last longer and require immediate medical help. It is important to recognize and treat even mild asthma symptoms to help you prevent severe episodes and keep asthma under better control.
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Allergies And Chronic Fatigue
It is not uncommon for a person who suffers from allergies to also suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome . Symptoms of CFS include extreme exhaustion that does not have any known cause. The first step is to talk to your doctor so they can assess for potential illnesses. If they cannot find the cause, then your next step should be to take to an allergist.
Why? Because it is often the case that a person with CFS has an over-sensitive immune system. When you consider that allergies can be caused by over-sensitive immune systems, it is easy to see that why the conditions often exist together. It is often the case that by treating allergies, fatigue can be reduced. Other things can affect both fatigue and allergies, such as mold spores and other environmental irritants.
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What Causes An Asthma Attack
Asthma triggers cause muscles around your airways to tighten. They also cause inflammation. This makes the lining of the airways swell. And thick, sticky mucus forms.
The result: breathing becomes more difficult.
As Joseph Allen, MD, Family Medicine of Vandalia, explains, A lot of people relate it to breathing through a straw where they just feel like they cannot move the air in and out of their lungs. So, you get this inflammation, it constricts the bronchioles .
Click play to watch the video or read video transcript.
What happens to the body when person has an asthma attack?
Most asthma attacks are moderate flare-ups. In this case, symptoms include:
- Tightening chest
- Tiring or getting out of breath
Asthma attacks can rise to a life-threatening, emergency level when you have the following symptoms:
- Severe breathing difficulty
- Being too short of breath to talk or walk
- Feeling lightheaded or dizzy, like youre going to pass out
- Lips or fingers turning blue
- The strength of your exhalations measure under 50 percent of your personal best on a peak flow monitor
Severe asthma attacks like this can cause brain damage or death. This is because your lungs lose their ability to take in life-giving oxygen and expel carbon dioxide.
Call 911 or get someone to call for you when you experience any of the above symptoms, especially if you cannot immediately relieve them with your prescribed quick-relief medication.
Avoiding Nighttime Asthma And Improving Sleep
Asthma can make it challenging to get quality sleep, so its helpful to cultivate habits that support sleep health. Focusing on improving sleep hygiene is a significant first step. By developing a regular sleep schedule and healthy daytime routines, people with asthma can reduce unnecessary daytime fatigue and focus on controlling their asthma symptoms.
Asthma triggers in the bedroom may increase the risk of nocturnal asthma and lost sleep. In addition to working with a doctor to find solutions for reducing or eliminating asthma triggers, below are a few tips specific to designing the ideal bedroom environment and avoiding nighttime asthma:
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If You Suspect You Might Have Asthma Definitely Head To The Doctor
Your doctor will probably give you a physical exam first to examine the general state of your health. After that, theyll likely put you through some lung function tests, such as a spirometry, which checks how much air you can exhale after taking a deep breath as well as how fast you can expel air, according to the Mayo Clinic. Or they may do a peak flow test, which measures how hard you can breathe out. If you cant exhale enough air or breathe out quickly, it may be a sign your lungs arent working well, which could point to asthma, Dr. Benzaquen says.
There are other exams they can use, too, like exposing you to methacholine, a known asthma trigger, to see if your airways narrow, or allergy testing, since allergies and asthma are so often connected.
If you are diagnosed with asthma, itll be within one of four categories, according to the Mayo Clinic. Mild intermittent asthma means you have minimal asthma symptoms for up to two days a week and up to two nights a month, while mild persistent asthma means youre experiencing symptoms more frequently than twice a week, but not more than once on any given day. Moderate persistent asthma ups the ante: Youre dealing with symptoms once a day and more than one night a week. Finally, severe persistent asthma involves constant symptoms most days and frequently at night too.
Signs Of Asthma Absolutely Everyone Should Know
You might think you know the signs of asthma because hey, it seems like one of those health conditions that is absolutely unmistakable. Its kind of obvious if you justcant really breathe, right? Sure, but asthma symptoms can present with a lot more complexity and subtlety than that. Many people do not realize they have asthma and deal with daily symptoms, Purvi Parikh, M.D., an allergist and immunologist with Allergy & Asthma Network, tells SELF. Because of that, you should be aware of the signs of asthma so you dont write them off for months or even years without realizing you have this persistentand ultimately treatablehealth condition.
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Health Effects Of Smoke Exposure Due To Wildland Fires
How does smoke in the air affect my health?
How smoke conditions may affect your health is determined by a number of factors, such as the length of time you are exposed, how much air you breathe in, your health status and the concentration of smoke in the air.
Smoke is made up of a number of components. The unhealthiest material in wildland fire smoke is the small particles . They may make it harder to breathe or make you cough. These small particles can also make existing heart and lung conditions worse.
Who is most at risk from exposure to smoke?
Young children, the elderly, and people with heart or lung conditions, like asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and congestive heart failure are more sensitive to the adverse effects of exposure to smoke. People participating in sports or strenuous work outdoors may also be more susceptible, because they are breathing air deeply and rapidly. Risks increase when smoke becomes heavier and as the length of time a person is exposed increases.
What are the symptoms of smoke exposure?
Exposure to smoke can cause sore eyes, tears, cough and a runny nose. If the smoke lasts days to weeks or is very heavy, it can cause lung problems and a longer-lasting cough. Exposure to smoke can also make heart and lung conditions worse.
What should I do if Im concerned about smoke?
Manitobans who are concerned about smoke can take the following precautions:
People with heart or lung conditions, including asthma, can also do the following:
What Body Systems Control The Need For Sleep
The Body System that controls the need for sleep is the nervous system. There are two different sets of nerves in our brain: the nerves that are in control when we are awake, and the nerves that are in control when we are asleep. When we feel fatigued and are ready for sleep, neurotransmitters are passed to the wake nerves as a signal to turn off. Control is passed to the sleep nerves, which control automatic bodily functions and the three stages of brain activity involved in sleep: light sleep, deep sleep, and REM activity.
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Keep Your Symptoms Under Control
- Monitoring your symptoms and checking your airways with a peak flow meter will help you manage asthma better. This should help reduce fatigue. Peak flow meters are hand-held devices that measure your ability to push air out of your lungs.
- Take your medications as directed, and always have a rescue inhaler nearby.
What Are Common Asthma Attack Triggers
An asthma attack happens when someone comes in contact with substances that irritate them. Healthcare providers call these substances triggers. Knowing what triggers your asthma makes it easier to avoid asthma attacks.
For some people, a trigger can bring on an attack right away. Sometimes, an attack may start hours or days later.
Triggers can be different for each person. But some common triggers include:
- Air pollution: Many things outside can cause an asthma attack. Air pollution includes factory emissions, car exhaust, wildfire smoke and more.
- Dust mites: You cant see these bugs, but they are in many homes. If you have a dust mite allergy, they can cause an asthma attack.
- Exercise: For some people, exercising can cause an attack.
- Mold: Damp places can spawn mold. It can cause problems for people with asthma. You dont even have to be allergic to mold to have an attack.
- Pests: Cockroaches, mice and other household pests can cause asthma attacks.
- Pets: Your pets can cause asthma attacks. If youre allergic to pet dander , breathing in the dander can irritate your airways.
- Tobacco smoke: If you or someone in your home smokes, you have a higher risk of developing asthma. The best solution is to quit smoking.
- Strong chemicals or smells.
With asthma, you may not have all of these symptoms. You may have different signs at different times. And symptoms can change between asthma attacks.
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