Asthma Symptoms: Risk Factors, Triggers, & Tips For Prevention
Are you hunting for signs to confirm you have asthma? Or do you want to gather information on the possible symptoms and warning signs of asthma?
Asthma is a chronic disease and blocks the airway tube. The airway tube is responsible for carrying air into our lungs. Thus asthma generally results in breathing issues.
You can stop asthma attacks by recognizing the signs at an early stage before it gets any worse. People who have asthma can be showing different symptoms, based on the development of their immunity. This means adolescents, children, and adults can also show a slight variation in the symptoms. As long as one takes precautionary measures as stated by their healthcare provider, all is well.
Symptoms Of Asthma
The number of cases of asthma on a global scale is steadily increasing, for both, children and adults. Symptoms can develop from any age, starting at as young as 5 years.
Here is a list of some common and uncommon signs that you have may have asthma:
These are some known signs that are highly occurring in asthma patients.
Never-ending or recurring coughing during the night or early morning is a strong symptom of asthma. This persistent cough can be spread throughout the day and generally won’t subside without asthma medication. Most children who have asthma will cough for abnormally long periods.
2. Shortness of breath
Sometimes it would be very difficult to sleep as asthma causes shortness of breath. It would be hard to inhale air during exercise and even some day-to-day chores. Some patients may find it difficult to speak, eat, and even go for short runs.
You may hear a weird sound when you breathe, which imitates the sound of whistling. This sound comes from the airway tube as an obstruction is not letting the airflow in and out naturally. It sounds like sipping a drink from a straw.
4. Chest tightness
Feeling more tired than usual and having an unpleasant sensation or pressure in the chest is another common symptom of asthma. This leads to uneasiness with every breath and a painful contraction-like feeling when one bends down or makes sudden bodily movements.
Asthma symptoms can be similar to those of other conditions such as bronchitis, vocal cord dysfunction, sinusitis, and even heart strokes. Although, not everyone would be having the same symptoms as mentioned above. There are some individuals who may have unusual symptoms that could be linked to asthma along with several other health conditions.
- Difficult Breathing
- Sleepless night
- Chronic cough without wheezing
- Lack of energy to exercise and maintain posture
People with asthma encounter triggers. The muscles in the throat/chest will react by tightening more and the lining of the air tube may swell and fill up with mucus. It makes breathing strenuous, leading to severe asthma symptoms or an exacerbation known as an asthma attack.
- Blue lips or fingernails
- Sweaty face and pale skin
- Tight neck and chest muscles
- Increased fast breathing instances
- Coughing won’t stop after taking medication. In fact, it develops into a runny nose, headache, sneezing, and sore throat
- Anxiety feeling leads to a panic attack
- Wheezing becomes a part of your breathing cycles
When a person is exposed to numerous irritants and elements that trigger allergies, then the signs and symptoms of asthma can easily be ignited.
Asthma triggers vary from individual to individual:
- Allergens include pollen grain, dust, spores, waste, or fur of pets
- Winter season/cold air
- Emotions such as depression
- Extreme lethargy along with chronic cough
- Infection-related to respiratory organs
- Adding preservatives and sulfites to some food or beverages
- Air pollutants such as fog, chemical gas, etc.
- Medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and beta-blockers
- Physical tasks
There are some risk factors which increase the chances of the onset of asthma:
- Gene/Hereditary: Having a blood relative diagnosed with asthma such as immediate family, parent, or sibling.
- Having other allergic issues, which causes itchy skin, fever, running nose, congestion, and itchy eyes.
- Smoking habits
- Working in occupations where chemicals are used extensively without proper precautions can easily induce asthma.
- Other types of pollution or exposure to smoke from factories, vehicles, and waste disposal.
Asthma can be both, short and long term, depending upon the symptoms every individual displays. Proper treatment and a health-centric lifestyle make the world of a difference in preventing the onset of this respiratory condition.
Measures To Prevent Asthma
As per research, there is no cure that can resolve the issue of asthma. But the condition is extremely controllable and one could live life normally without the slightest of disturbances in their everyday activities. Here are a few steps one can take to keep themselves safe from this disease.
1. Contact a doctor
Feel free to connect with your doctor to determine the cause and treatment plan for your asthma signs. First, they will talk about your physical state and after that, they will run tests for the lungs or respiratory system.
2. Follow an action plan
The doctor will prepare an action plan based on your test results which you have to follow at any cost to avoid the symptoms.
Vaccinations help to be safe from diseases such as influenza and pneumonia. Getting vaccinated for such diseases also saves you from asthma as they act as asthma-triggers.
One should be able to record their breathing differences in normal conditions and during an apparent attack. That would help to recognize the danger signs for an impending attack. You can either take the help of a doctor to measure the peak flow of air, or you can measure it at home, or even through a smartwatch.
Identifying triggers is extremely important as you can take measures to restrict yourself from such allergens and irritants. Whether it’s a food item, specific drink, or some cloth materials, it’s better to be aware and keep your distance rather than to spark an asthma attack.
Do not make any changes in medication without consulting the doctor. It is always a nice idea to take your medication to the doctor so he can make sure you are using the right medication and exact dose (this is only if you’ve chosen the medicines yourself).
Long-term medication such as anti-inflammatory drugs or allergy medication can help in inhaling air comfortably.
In most of the cases, a doctor suggests an inhaler as the primary means of medication. Be particular about how to use an inhaler and follow the instructions to use it. And always carry it in your backpack. Consider it a top priority amongst your bag pack items.
As mentioned previously, asthma symptoms vary from individual to individual. Unless the signs are obvious, you must consult a doctor and get a quick diagnosis done.
September 22, 2020 Sam Bell