Are Allergies And Asthma Related
Allergies and asthma are related conditions linked by a common airway. They both affect our breathing by blocking the free passage of air between the nose and the lungs.
With allergies, the obstruction occurs in the upper area of the airway when the layers of the nose become inflamed. Sneezing helps to clear the mucus from the upper part of the airway. With asthma, the breathlessness and wheezing are caused by a narrowing of the bronchioles. Inflammation of the small airways layers may cause mucus to increase, making the obstruction worse. The dry cough that develops in the airways helps to clear out the mucus.;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; ;;; An allergic reaction in the lungs can develop into asthma, so its important to immediately address the symptoms to control both conditions.
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What Causes Adults To Develop Asthma
At least 30% of adult asthma cases are triggered by allergies. People who are allergic to cats may have an increased risk for developing adult onset asthma. Exposure to allergens or irritants such as cigarette smoke, chemicals, mold, dust, or other substances commonly found in the persons environment might trigger the first asthma symptoms in an adult.
Prolonged exposure to certain workplace materials may set off asthma symptoms in adults.
Hormonal fluctuations in women may play a role in adult onset asthma. Some women first develop asthma symptoms during or after a pregnancy. Women going through menopause can develop asthma symptoms for the first time.
Different illnesses, viruses, or infections can be a factor in adult onset asthma. A bad cold or a bout with the flu is often a factor in adult onset asthma.
Smoking does not cause adult onset asthma; however, if you smoke or if you are exposed to cigarette smoke , it may provoke asthma symptoms.
Its Difficult To Say For Sure Why People Get Asthma But Thanks To Research Were Clear About Some Of The Risk Factors That Make Asthma More Likely
What causes asthma is different to what triggers asthma:
- The causes are the underlying reasons why someone gets asthma in the first place.
- Triggers are things like dust mites or pollen that can make asthma symptoms worse.
Here we look at what causes asthma, and where its possible for you to lower the risk. The good news is that some of these risk factors are things you can do something about.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Allergic Asthma
If you have allergic asthma, you may have many of the same symptoms you would experience with other types of asthma. These symptoms can include:
These symptoms can be very intense during an asthma attack. Make sure you have a treatment plan in place if you have severe asthma symptoms this plan often includes an inhaler .
You can also experience symptoms more closely related to allergies. These are usually less intense than asthma symptoms and can happen when youre exposed to an allergen. These symptoms can include:
- A stuffy nose.
- A rash and hives.
Allergic Asthma: How To Know If Allergies Are Triggering Your Asthma
Allergies or asthma can make us feel miserable. But when combined the results and symptoms can be much worse. Indoor and outdoor allergies impact over 50 million Americans with a wide range of triggers. Asthma affects 1 in 13 people and causes the airways inside the lungs to constrict and narrow making it difficult to breathe.
Allergies and asthma are the two most common chronic diseases in the United States, and they occur together more often than many people realize. In fact, allergic asthma;is the most common type of asthma, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.
In Florida, allergy season begins as early as January;when trees begin to release their pollen. The allergy season continues through summer and into the fall;with grass pollen, ragweed pollen and molds. These allergens can trigger asthmatic symptoms in people allergic to them.
If you struggle with allergy and asthma symptoms, read on to learn more about how these two chronic diseases can be related and how to treat the symptoms.
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What Are Common Allergens That Can Trigger Allergic Asthma
Allergens can be found all around you. These can be in your indoor and outdoor environments. When you have allergic asthma, inhaling these allergens can set off your symptoms. Its important to know what can trigger your asthma so that you can control your condition.
Possible allergens that can trigger allergic asthma can include:
- Dander: This is skin flakes and its usually from pets. Hair is often grouped with dander as a common allergen.
- Pollen: A powdery substances, pollen comes from plants. The most common types of pollen that trigger allergic asthma are grass and weeds.
- Mold: Typically found in places that hold moisture , mold produces spores that get into the air and can trigger your asthma.
- Dust mites: Very small and shaped like spiders, dust mites live in the soft surfaces of your home . They eat skin flakes that you naturally shed all of the time. Both the mites themselves and their feces are allergens.
- Cockroaches: These pests can be found in many homes and other buildings. Your asthma can be triggered by the feces, saliva and other body parts of the cockroaches.
Some people suffer from seasonal allergies. These are allergies that flare up at a certain time of year. This is often connected to spring because of the blooming of many plants. During this time of year, there is more pollen in the air than other seasons .
If Your Asthma Symptoms Are Caused By Allergies Take Steps To Control Knownor Potential Triggers In Your Environment
Allergy-proof your house for dust, mold, cockroaches, and other common indoor allergens to which you are allergic.
;Reduce your outdoor activities when the pollen count or ozone level is high.
;Choose foods that dont contribute to your asthma or allergy symptoms.
;Evaluate your workplace for possible allergens and take the necessary steps to reduce your exposure to them.
In order to determine relevant triggers, you may want to seek consultation with an allergist who can further define these triggers.
In addition, anyone with asthma should consider getting an annual flu shot. Older adults also should talk with their internist about getting a pneumonia vaccination.
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Diagnosis Of Morning Allergies
Doctors diagnose allergies based on your symptoms and tests that confirm an allergic reaction. Morning allergies are diagnosed when your symptoms present most prominently in the morning. Diagnosis may include:
- Medical history: Your primary care doctor or an allergist will take your medical history, including whether you have a family history of allergies or asthma. The doctor will also do a physical exam.
- Assessing symptoms: Your doctor will evaluate your symptoms, including what triggers them and when they most often occur.
- Allergy tests: This may include skin tests, blood tests, or both.
Identifying An Asthma Cough
The purpose of a cough is to remove foreign particles and bacteria to prevent a possible infection. There are two types of coughs: productive and nonproductive. When a cough is productive, it means that a noticeable amount of phlegm expelled. This enables the lungs to get rid of harmful substances.
Coughing in people with asthma can be helpful because its one of the bodys natural defense mechanisms. A productive asthmatic cough will expel phlegm and mucus from the lungs. In most cases of asthma, the cough is considered nonproductive. A nonproductive cough is a dry cough. Its a response to an irritant that forces the bronchial tubes to spasm . Swelling and constriction of the airways, which prompts this type of nonproductive cough, characterize asthma.
An asthma cough is also often accompanied by wheezing. This is a high-pitched whistling sound caused by a constricted airway.
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What Is The Best Way To Live With Asthma
The key to good living with asthma is developing a strong partnership between patients, caregivers, and physicians. Practical steps include the following:
;; Make an asthma care management plan with your physician. An asthma management plan helps you understand what to do when specific situations arise. Each time you visit the physician, talk about your plan, and make any necessary changes.
;; Educate yourself. Stay informed about the latest developments in asthma and allergy care and treatment. Ask your physician about new medications or research findings that may relate to your care.
;; Get regular medical care. If you have asthma, you should see your physician at least once a year, even if your symptoms are under control. When you become sick, or if you have significant changes in your health, you should also talk with your physician about how your asthma could be affected.
;; Take your medicine. Your asthma medications will make you feel better and sometimes people think thats the time to stop. Its not! Use your medications as prescribed.
With good management, asthma symptoms can be controlled. Most people who develop adult onset asthma are able to lead normal lives. Expect success!
Asthma Symptoms In Children
- 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
This page was reviewed for accuracy 4/17/2018.
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What Are The Symptoms Of An Asthma Attack
If your asthma symptoms are worsening you could be having an asthma attack, also known as an asthma flare.; Any of these signs indicate the need for;immediate;medical treatment; follow yourAsthma Action Plan.;
- Symptoms dont respond as indicated in your Asthma Action Plan.
- It feels like you cant catch a good deep breath or cant get the air out of your chest.
- You cant talk except in short phrases.
- You have a cough that will not stop, or you simply feel too exhausted to breathe.
- Your shoulders tense and raise closer to your ears than normal.
- Its easier to breathe while sitting and leaning forward than when lying down.
- Your fingernails turn blue, or your lips become bluish or gray in color.
- You start sweating even though your skin feels clammy and cold.
- The skin around your chest, ribs and collarbones sinks in with each breath and youre using stomach muscles to help you breathe.
- You experience swelling of your throat, tongue or limbs.
Symptoms Of Allergic Asthma
The symptoms of allergic and regular asthma are similar and include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, rapid breathing, and chest tightness. In addition, you may experience other symptoms if you have a fever or skin allergies. The symptoms include itchy skin, rashes, flaky skin, runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, and watery eyes.
Swallowing any allergens makes you susceptible to symptoms like hives, swollen face or tongue, swollen throat or its, tingly mouth, and anaphylaxis.
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Serum Specific Ige Allergy Tests
Serum specific IgE allergy tests are blood tests that detect specific IgE antibodies. These antibodies are made by your bodys immune system against allergens .
These skin and blood tests are not conclusive in determining asthma triggers. Just because your skin and blood react to an allergen, doesn’t mean your lungs will too. Think of these tests as a helpful ingredient for your doctor to use to assess your overall health and asthma and allergy needs.
Allergy tests can however help define the substances you are allergic to and enable a precision approach to managing that trigger.;
Tests such as these should only ever be performed under the guidance of a doctor or allergy specialist.
What Is An Asthma Action Plan
Your healthcare provider will work with you to develop an asthma action plan. This plan tells you how and when to use your medicines. It also tells you what to do if your asthma gets worse and when to seek emergency care. Understand the plan and ask your healthcare provider about anything you dont understand.
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Medications For Allergic Asthma
Try nasal allergy medications that donât make you sleepy, saline rinses, and nasal sprays . If these donât work, use nasal steroid sprays and stronger antihistamines. If none of this helps, it may be time to talk to a doctor about allergy shots.
There are many good asthma treatments, but most require a prescription. These medications include inhaled steroids, which fight inflammation, and bronchodilators, which open up your airways. If traditional treatments donât help your allergic asthma, Xolair, an injectable medication that reduces IgE levels, may help. Also, the long-acting anticholinergic medication called tiotropium bromide may be used in addition to your regular maintenance medications to help with symptom control. This medication can be used by anyone ages 6 years and older.
SOURCES:American Academy of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology: “What to expect at the doctor’s office,” “How to help your allergies and asthma,” “Allergic asthma information,” “Is your asthma allergic?” American Medical Association, Essential Guide to Asthma, 1998. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: “Asthma: How is Asthma Diagnosed?” “How is asthma treated?”Boehringer Ingelheim: “US FDA Expands Approval of Tiotropium RespimatÂ® for Maintenance Treatment of Asthma in Children.”FDA. Prescribing Information: Spiriva Respimat.
The Difference Between Allergy And Asthma
Spring can be a difficult time of year for people who have allergies or asthma. Flowers and trees are in full bloom, causing pollen to coat sidewalks, cars, and everything in between.
Asthma and allergies are linked in many ways, but what is the difference between the two?
Both asthma and allergies can make you feel miserable. Understanding the similarities and differences between the two can help you learn to manage symptoms or potentially avoid them altogether.
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What Happens In An Asthma Attack
During an episode of asthma, when your airway comes into contact with a trigger, the linings of the airway become inflamed and narrow.
Mucus clogs and tightens the airways, making it difficult for someone having an episode to breathe. Each individual case of asthma is different, and each person has different reactions to various triggers. Some allergens are more common than others.
How To Use Asthma Inhalers Without A Spacer
Using a metered-dose asthma inhaler seems simple. But many people do not use them the right way. If you use your metered-dose asthma inhaler the wrong way, less medicine gets to your lungs and most remains in the back of your mouth 8). If you have a spacer, use it. It helps get more medicine into your airways.
- The instructions below are not for dry powder inhalers. They have different instructions .
- Take off the cap and shake the inhaler hard.
- If you have not used the inhaler in a while, you may need to prime it. See the instructions that came with your inhaler for how to do this.
- Breathe out all the way.
- Hold the inhaler 1 to 2 inches in front of your mouth .
Breathe in Slowly
- Start breathing in slowly through your mouth, then press down on the inhaler 1 time.
- Keep breathing in slowly, as deeply as you can.
Hold Your Breath
- If you can, hold your breath as you slowly count to 10. This lets the medicine reach deep into your lungs.
- If you are using inhaled, quick-relief medicine , wait about 1 minute before you take your next puff. You do not need to wait a minute between puffs for other medicines.
- After using your asthma inhaler, rinse your mouth with water, gargle, and spit. This helps reduce side effects from your medicine.
Figure 2. Using asthma inhalers without a spacer
Keep Your Asthma Inhaler Clean
Look at the hole where the medicine sprays out of your inhaler. If you see powder in or around the hole, clean your inhaler.
Replacing Your Asthma Inhaler
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When To Seek Professional Treatment
Often, morning allergies are a mild, sometimes seasonal, nuisance. Other times, they are more severe. In that case, making an appointment with your doctor is important.
If lifestyle adjustments and over-the-counter antihistamines dont help, you may want to see your doctor for a formal diagnosis and treatment plan. Your doctor may recommend intranasal corticosteroids, some of which are available over the counter.
Immunotherapy can also help control allergies when it is difficult to avoid triggers. Your allergy doctor will formulate these to help desensitize you to allergens. They are especially useful against the common triggers of morning allergies.
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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Home Remedies For Asthma
- Know the asthma symptoms to watch for.
- Know how to take your peak flow reading and what it means.
- Know which triggers make your asthma worse and what to do when this happens.
- Know how to care for your asthma when you exercise.
Asthma action plans are written documents for managing asthma.
An asthma action plan should include:
- Instructions for taking asthma medicines when your condition is stable
- A list of asthma triggers and how to avoid them
- How to recognize when your asthma is getting worse, and when to call your provider
A peak flow meter is a simple device to measure how quickly you can move air out of your lungs.
- It can help you see if an attack is coming, sometimes even before symptoms appear. Peak flow measurements help let you know when you need to take medicine or other action.
- Peak flow values of 50% to 80% of your best results are a sign of a moderate asthma attack. Numbers below 50% are a sign of a severe attack.