The month of May is all about asthma and allergy awareness. World Asthma Day is May 5th and while there is much attention given to asthma and allergies during May, living with allergies and asthma happens daily for those diagnosed with this serious lung condition.
25 million Americans have an asthma diagnosis with one in 10 being children. Kids miss 4 million school days per year because of asthma flare ups. Adults on average miss 14.2 million days of work per year, according to statistics from the Allergy and Asthma Network. Asthma in kids and adults has a huge annual effect on the health and economy of the United State and is predicted to get worse as climate change continues to worsen.
What is Asthma?
Asthma is a chronic disease that causes airways to become inflamed and hard to breath. The inside walls of airways become sore, swollen and sensitive. There is no cure for asthma but it can be managed with proper prevention of asthma attacks and treatment.
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, “more Americans than ever before have asthma and it is one of this country’s most common and costly diseases.”
And in 2021 people still die from asthma attacks everyday, nearly 4,000 every year!
According to the CDC, “asthma is one of the most common long-term diseases of children, but adults can have asthma, too.” In severe asthma attacks airways can close so much that vital organs don’t get enough oxygen. And yes, death can happen from a severe asthma attack.
What Causes Asthma?
People with asthma have inflamed airways and are sensitive to things that don’t normally bother others . These triggers can include: Smoking, Air Pollution, Pollen , Chemicals, Dust, Pet Dander, Strong Fumes/Odors , Exercise, Weather, Medications
What are the symptoms of asthma?
Common symptoms include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness
How can an asthma attack be prevented?
There’s no cure for asthma but you can manage the disease by avoiding triggers and taking medications to prevent symptoms.
Follow your treatment plan set up by your doctor. Learn your triggers and avoid them. Take allergy and asthma meds as prescribed. Most people live normal lives with asthma when it is properly managed and can exercise and be athletic. I’ve learned through my doctor how to run competitively despite having asthma. When controlled properly, most people can live a normal life, but control is the key. So follow your asthma action plan and always be asthma aware .
For more asthma information , check out the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America by clicking here
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