Asthma is a chronic condition that causes the airways to narrow and produce excessive mucus, making it difficult to breathe. Some people find that their asthma only causes minor interference in their lives. For others, their daily activities are significantly impaired. Asthma severity can change over time and is not curable, but its symptoms can be controlled so that anyone who has it can live a normal and happy life.
The symptoms of asthma vary by person and from day to day in the same person. Some people experience infrequent symptoms. Others can suffer from multiple symptoms on a daily basis.
The most common symptoms include:
- shortness of breath
- pain or tightness in the chest when taking a deep breath
- difficulty sleeping due to coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath
- whistling or wheezing during exhalation
- attacks of coughing or wheezing that are worse in the presence of respiratory infections such as colds.
Some people find that their asthma symptoms are situational and occur during or after exercise, exposure to fumes, exposure to hot or dry air or exposure to allergens. Asthma does not go away, but with control, symptoms may be reduced in frequency and severity.
Treatment Options For Asthma
There are many treatment options for asthma. No matter whether a person suffers from infrequent or situational symptoms or has multiple symptoms daily, a multi-pronged approach can help anyone living with asthma. Well-managed asthma means that a person can still participate in and enjoy their favorite activities and lead a productive life.
Most asthma treatments involve two simultaneous strategies. The first of these is prevention. People who experience frequent asthma symptoms or whose asthma interferes with their daily activities can take daily preventive medications. These include inhalers as well as oral tablets or liquids. For those with allergy-triggered asthma, a daily allergy medication may be needed. Long-term asthma controllers help to control daily symptoms while also reducing the likelihood of an attack. Short-term or rescue medications help to put an end to an attack that has already started.
Finding Asthma Care Specialists
To find an effective asthma action plan, the physicians at AACOS are here to help. They offer flexible and individualized care that strives to lessen the severity, frequency and duration of symptoms and attacks of people living with asthma. Contact AACOS to schedule an appointment or to learn more about this treatable condition.