Asthma is a chronic lung disease which causes the airways to be very sensitive. Airways become inflamed and narrow. Breathing becomes difficult.The inflammation leads to edema or swelling, of the airways. Edema causes cells in the airways to break down. This breakdown of cells releases chemicals into the airways that lead to more edema and inflammation. Increased inflammation, swelling, and mucus block the flow of air, making it difficult for you to breathe.
Managing your asthma correctly is very important to leading an active and healthy life. Your first step in managing your asthma should be forming a strong partnership with your doctor. Together, you can develop a personalized treatment plan to help control your symptoms
Every person with asthma has different triggers that can bring on an asthma attack. Controlling your environment by reducing or stopping exposure to your triggers is an important part of treatment.
Here are some typical triggers and ways to control them:
Shortness of breath
Asthma treatment is different for infants, children, and adults. Treatment varies and is based on your asthma symptoms, and how often you have these symptoms.
According to the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program (NAEPP), the general goals of asthma treatment should include:
Be free from severe symptoms day and night, allowing you to sleep through the night
Have the best possible lung function
Be able to participate fully in any activities of your choice
Not miss work or school because of asthma symptoms
Need few or no urgent care visits or hospital stays for asthma
Use medicines to control asthma with as few side effects as possible
Be satisfied with your asthma care
To reach these goals, your personal asthma treatment plan may include:
Avoiding triggers (staying away from things that bother your airways)
Medicines (know how they work and how to take them)
Monitoring your symptoms
Seeing your doctor regularly
Knowing when to get medical and emergency help
Peak flow, which is a measurement of air flow, monitoring