What is Asthma?
Asthma is a condition in which your airways narrow, swell and produce extra mucus. This can make breathing difficult and trigger coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.
For some people, asthma is a minor nuisance. For others, it can be a major problem that interferes with daily activities and may lead to a life-threatening asthma attack.
Asthma can’t be cured, but its symptoms can be controlled. Because asthma often changes over time, it’s important that you work with the medical professionals at Doctors Immediate Care to track your signs and symptoms and adjust treatment as needed.
– Frequent cough, especially at night
– Losing your breath easily or shortness of breath
– Feeling very tired or weak when exercising
– Wheezing or coughing after exercise
– Feeling tired, easily upset, grouchy, or moody
– Decreases or changes in lung function as measured on a peak flow meter
– Signs of a cold or allergies (sneezing, runny nose, cough, nasal congestion, sore throat, and headache)
– Trouble sleeping
Asthma is Serious. Asthma is a serious disease, and can kill if it is not treated the right way. One large study showed that in the children who died of asthma, one third of them had mild disease! When it is treated the right way, people with asthma can live normal, active lives.
The duration of an attack can vary, depending on what caused it and how long the airways have been inflamed. Mild episodes may last only a few minutes; more severe ones can last from hours to days. Mild attacks can resolve spontaneously or may require medication, typically a quick-acting inhaler.
Asthma triggers. Exposure to various irritants and substances that trigger allergies (allergens) can trigger signs and symptoms of asthma. Asthma triggers are different from person to person and can include: Airborne substances, such as pollen, dust mites, mold spores, pet dander or particles of cockroach waste.
A severe asthma attack can cause symptoms such as:
– Shortness of breath
– Can’t speak in full sentences
– Feel breathless even when you lie down
– Chest feels tight
– Bluish tint to your lips
– Feel agitated, confused, or can’t concentrate
– Hunched shoulders, strained abdominal and neck muscles
– Feel that you need to sit or stand up to breathe more easily