Dealing with Asthma

In order to cure and manage any disease first and foremost thing to be done is the right diagnosis which can only be done by the professional doctor. So it is very important that you consult a doctor so that you can find out whether you are suffering from asthma which has become a very common disease because of increasing pollution. Once you have been diagnosed with asthma you have to take proper care and follow required medication to properly manage it.

Signs of Asthma

Asthma is characterized by inflammation of the bronchial tubes with increased production of mucus. People with asthma experience symptoms when the airways tighten , inflame or fill with mucus. Common symptoms are:

  • Coughing especially at night
  • Wheezing in the chest
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness pain or pressure
  • Feeling very tired or weak while exercising specially running
  • The person suffering from asthma becomes moody at times

Identify and Avoid Asthma triggers

A number of allergens and irritants ranging from pollen and mold to cold air, air pollution , carpet dust, bird feather, pet dogs and cats are known to trigger asthmatic attacks. Anything that you are in particular allergic to which again may be some food directly from the refrigerator ice creams, some lentils, some vegetables or fruits or of course some medicines like high power painkillers may trigger asthma attacks. It is very important to find out what causes and worsens your asthma and take precautionary measures to avoid those triggering agents. One can also have allergy test of few items in order to know whether you are allergic to such items and if yes you got to avoid such items. Sometimes emotional triggers are also to be taken care of like excess crying in kids.

Maintain a Diary

Monitoring your asthma is very crucial in reducing the symptoms. Maintaining record of past asthma attacks can help you by guiding about possible allergens and the seasons in which it occurs more frequently so that you can pay attention in avoiding such allergens and being extra careful in these seasons like changing weather or cold weather. And of course foods that trigger your asthma can be easily identified with the record in your diary.

Take the prescribed medicine

Its very important to take the prescribed medicine in order to manage your asthma well and avoid any serious problem. If you are not following the medication then it becomes very difficult to control your asthma as it takes longer time to control uncontrolled asthma. It is rightly said that “prevention is always better than cure” so its better that you follow the right medication to prevent yourself from unwanted asthma attacks.

Get vaccinated for Influenza and Pneumonia

Generally it is seen that asthma gets triggered by flu so it is a good idea to vaccinate yourself against flu so as to avoid triggering of asthma attack. Especially in kids, this is considered as a very good preventive measure.

Using a peak flow meter

This asthma test can warn you of an impending asthma attacks so that you can be alert and take preventive measures or pretreat before you have serious problems.

Titrating medication

In asthma we should not discontinue the medication as soon as symptoms of asthma attack disappears. Instead we should continue the same medication until our doctor prescribes another lower dose medicine  or decrease the dose of same medicine. It’s a long process as the main medication in asthma are inhalers which in turn are basically of two types - Preventive and symptomatic . Preventive inhalers are prescribed for longer duration whereas symptomatic are prescribed for short duration.It is always better to consult your doctor before you decrease the dose as per your frequency of attack. Generally if it is the case of childhood asthma then there is high chance of child outgrowing it , so it is very important that one should consult the doctor and then decrease the dose of inhaler in kids as well as elders.

Managing your child's asthma

The parents with asthmatic child have to go through hard time and so does the child. But it is your responsibility and duty to make sure you help your child outgrow this disease by helping her/him in all possible ways. The first thing parents should do is explain the scenario to the child and the care he/she should take of oneself while choosing the food and ambience in absence of the parents. It’s really heart-breaking for parents when they are not able to give foods like ice-cream Sundaes or other foods to which child is allergic to. But remember you have to act according to your brain and should always be strict while choosing food for your child as intake of right food matters a lot in asthmatic people.

The parents have to be extra careful while sending their child to the school. As after the child starts going to school she/he comes in contact with different individuals with different symptoms of cold, cough, viral etc….and these are few of the main triggering agents for asthma. It is always better to provide your child with a mask when out of home. The parents should make sure that at least 3/4  teachers including the principal of the school should have the knowledge about your child having asthma and the treatment and medication to be given in case of asthma attack to the child. This makes easy not only for you and your child but also for for the school authority. Need not to mention that you should always provide proper medicines in your child’s school bag so that it is easily available when needed. Parents should update themselves with the new inventions going in the field of asthma.

Try these home remedies

  • Hot  water..Sipping hot water like sipping tea is known to be effective in asthma
  • Green tea...Drinking lots of green tea relieves asthma
  • Herbal drink..Drink containing ginger, black pepper, cinnamon when drank hot gives tremendous relief
  • Honey.. Honey when mixed with ginger juice makes a good reliever

These remedies are not scientifically proven. However, they have been used in many cultures since centuries and have benefited many.