About 8 in 100 people suffer from Asthma according to statistics published by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). A large proportion of the population is affected by asthma.
There have been growing occurrences of forest fires all across the globe, for instance, the recent bushfires in Australia. More and more people are expected to begin showing symptoms of the disease.
In the following article, you will see that it is not all doom and gloom. Asthma is a manageable condition.
With the help of a few tools and techniques e.g. the use of vacuums, the disuse of carpets and plotting the best air purifiers in your home, you can stop asthma from ruining your life and take back control of your own well-being. So let us begin:
What Causes Asthma?
Asthma is a condition where the affected person’s respiratory tract becomes inflamed and an excessive amount of mucus is being produced. This results in shortness of breath and difficulty in breathing. This can be incredibly debilitating.
Asthma flares up and worsens when there is an increase in dust or pollen present in the environment. It can also be caused by any other particulate matter or irritant in the air such as chemical fumes or any smoke.
No wonder the instances of asthma are expected to shoot up because of the recent spike in instances of fires-such as those in Los Angeles in the United States of America or the horrific Bushfires in Australia.
What to Do In Case of An Asthma Attack:
In the case of an asthma flare-up, the first thing you should do is stay calm. This is of paramount importance. Panicking in will cause you to take shorter breaths and possibly worsen the situation. Short and fast breaths will cause your airways to constrict more.
Staying calm will also allow you to make intelligent decisions and not fumble when you’re trying to reach for your inhaler. A lethal mistake if there ever was one.
If you are with a friend or someone you know, get their attention. Let them know that all is not right with you. Try to communicate the fact of your condition to friends and family. You can focus on trying to breathe. And they can get your inhaler or call an ambulance if an inhaler is not nearby.
Leave the Room
Distance yourself from what is causing the asthma attack. If someone is smoking, leave the room or ask them to put out the cigarette. If you are in the kitchen then leave as quickly as possible. Removing yourself from the situation will stop the attack from worsening.
Breathe Slow and Deep
Having removed yourself from the situation-stand up straight, and breathe. But slowly. Standing up will allow your lung cavity more room to expand-allowing more air into your lungs. Breathing slowly will prevent you from panicking and allow you time to get your inhaler out.
How to Manage Your Asthma:
Contact Your Doctor
If you have not yet been diagnosed and have trouble breathing, inform your doctor and get diagnosed as soon as possible. Acquiring an inhaler can literally be a lifesaver and that is an understatement.
Also, be sure to get a dose-counter inhaler. This will allow you to keep track of the number of times you can use the inhaler and prevent any untoward situation. Your doctor or family physician can also help you make a plan in the case of an asthma attack.
Inform Your Friends, Family, and Coworkers
Basically, anyone that you spend time with should know about your condition. In the case of an attack, they will know what is wrong and no time will be lost in ascertaining what is going on.
Inform them where your inhaler is at all times. Thus ensuring that in the case of an attack they will know where it is.
Learn the Signs
Early identification of an attack will give you more time to manage one. If you know when an attack is about to happen it will allow you to prepare yourself. You will be able to put the before-mentioned plan into action.
Identify Potential Triggers
Asthma can be caused by dust, fumes, pollen, and a myriad of other issues. It can also occur after exercise and even slight exertion. It is best to carry a notepad or make memos on your phone whenever you feel like you have had trouble breathing.
This might help you to know which triggers you are most sensitive to, for example, if you have trouble breathing when you are outside in the open. Notice if there are any trees and greenery nearby.
This might mean that you are sensitive to pollen. If you have trouble breathing when you are inside this could mean that you are sensitive to dust.
Avoid the Triggers
If you have noticed that you are sensitive to pollen, for example. You will know to keep the windows closed. And avoid the outdoors.
If you are more sensitive to dust then it might be best to use a vacuum cleaner a couple of times per week. Prevent dust from accumulating in carpets. If it happens when you smoke try to quit smoking.
If you notice that exercise is what causes it then tone down the intensity. It can be very depressing to not be able to perform your preferred workout. However, there are many other ways that you can get your workout done without as much risk.
For example, if you are a runner or swimmer, you can slow down and focus on form instead of intensity. If symptoms persist, then switch over towards weight training or yoga.
It can be seen that even though asthma is a life-threatening disease. It can also take most of the pleasure out of life. But one must keep in mind that this affliction is very manageable. You have to ensure that it does not get in your way.