If you are suffering from asthmatic attacks, then you are not alone. Asthma is one of the most faced medical conditions in the United States, affecting nearly 25 million Americans and hundreds of millions worldwide. Although there is no concrete cure for asthma, there are many effective methods to manage symptoms to keep asthma under control and improve quality of life.
Read on for a better understanding of asthma and how to maintain asthma control with effective treatment strategies.
What Is Asthma?
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that causes breathing difficulty. It is a disease of the airways that causes swelling and narrowing of the airway muscles. People with asthma can be of all ages, but the disease most often starts in childhood. In some cases, asthma goes away by adulthood.
Asthma can be very serious if it's not treated right away, so if you have common asthma symptom items like coughing or wheezing and difficulty breathing, you should see your doctor as soon as possible.
How Does Asthma Affect Your Life?
Asthma is a chronic disease that can cause wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath. This is because it affects the airways in your lungs. These tubes are where oxygen passes into your bloodstream, so when they're narrowed or swollen, it makes it difficult to breathe properly.
Over time, asthmatics may develop an asthma attack when exposed to factors such as cold air or exercise, making it even harder for them to breathe normally. The good news is many effective home remedies can keep asthma symptoms under control at home or during an attack.
Common Symptoms Of Asthma
If you know someone who has asthma or has been diagnosed with it, it's important to know when and how to seek medical treatment. Asthma symptoms can vary from person to person, but some common signs indicate a need for medical attention.
The following list outlines a few of the most common asthma symptom items:
- Chest tightness/pain
- Shortness of breath (sudden or prolonged)
- Fatigue/tiredness that doesn't go away after resting for a while
What are The Causes Of Asthma
Many different factors can contribute to asthma. The most common causes include genetics, environmental factors, and occupation. Let's have a look at each of these causes in more detail.
Asthma is a genetic condition, meaning you may inherit it from your family. You could get asthma if the genes that help protect against it are not present in your body. Genes are inherited components responsible for how we look and our bodies work.
Genes exist in all cells in the body, including blood cells. The protein produced by these genes determines many of our characteristics, such as eye color or facial features.
The same things cause not all asthma symptoms. For example, some people have allergies that make them more likely to have an asthma attack, while a viral infection or exercise can trigger others. But one thing that does tend to cause problems for many asthmatics is their environment.
Occupation can be a major risk factor in the development of asthma. Occupational exposures like dust, fumes, and chemicals can worsen asthma symptoms. In addition to these irritants, certain occupations may also cause physical stress to the body that results in increased airway narrowing, such as heavy lifting or twisting motions.
To determine whether or not you have asthma, your doctor will check your medical history to perform a physical exam. If you have asthma, it's important to keep track of any symptoms. This can help your asthma specialist doctor prescribe the right treatment for you and identify any changes in your condition that may need further attention.
Home Remedies For Asthma Symptoms
There are several different natural remedies for asthma that can be helpful manage your symptoms. Here is the combination of home remedy items we have selected:
Breathing exercises can help you reduce asthma symptoms and improve your overall health. In addition, they are a great way to relax and keep calm, which can be useful if you have stress or anxiety causing asthma symptoms.
Additionally, breathing exercises can also help you sleep better at night, leaving you feeling more rested the next day—and less likely to get sick!
Buteyko Breathing Technique
The Buteyko breathing technique is a breathing exercise that can help your asthma management. This technique involves breathing in and out through your nose while reducing the amount of air you breathe using your glottis muscles. To do this, follow these steps:
- Hold your breath for 5 seconds between inhalation and exhalation
- Exhale slowly through pursed lips
- Breathe in for two seconds through your nose
You can practice this technique at home or during exercise. It is especially useful for people with moderate to severe asthma who have been diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
Papworth Breathing Technique
The Papworth Breathing Technique is a simple method that can help you to control your asthma symptoms.
Papworth breathing is about feeling calm and relaxed instead of using techniques to try and relieve symptoms. First, you breathe through your nose, then hold for around four seconds before slowly exhaling through the mouth for about six seconds or longer if needed. You should do this at least thrice daily for 20 - 30 minutes.
No deep breaths are involved in this technique—just normal breathing focused on relaxing. However, if you find that breathing causes discomfort, don't hold it too long. Rather just ensure that you are inhaling and exhaling at the correct ratio of 4:6.
Tea or Coffee
If you love coffee or tea, here is some good news. A recent study reveals that caffeine can help improve your physical exercise performance.
The researchers found that drinking an energy drink before exercise improved exercise time by 3%, while drinking coffee improved it by 6%.
It's not surprising that caffeine would have this effect, as it has been proven to relax the body and mind, lower blood pressure and increase alertness and heart rate.
Essential oils are great for feeling the relief of asthma symptoms and keeping your airways clear. These oils can be inhaled or used topically, depending on the severity of your symptoms.
Herbal remedies will give relief of asthma symptoms. You can use lavender oil for this purpose. It may help reduce airway inflammation, relax chest muscles and promote sleep.
Eucalyptus oil is a natural anti-inflammatory and decongestant. In addition, it has been shown to have additional health benefits for cough, cold, and flu symptoms, as well as other respiratory infections and asthma.
To use, apply eucalyptus essential oil directly onto your chest to help relieve congestion from an asthma attack by inhaling the vapors or using it in a vaporizer.
Nutritional supplements can be effective treatment strategies for asthma.
Vitamin C, E, and B6 will help reduce inflammation. Vitamin C also has antioxidant properties that can help ease breathing problems by minimizing the amount of histamine in the lungs, which causes irritation.
Meanwhile, minerals like magnesium help relax muscles throughout your body, which may improve breathing capacity. Calcium helps regulate muscle contractions and heart rate; zinc is an antihistamine; selenium reduces inflammation while protecting immune function.
Therapies are a great way to address common asthma symptom items, but they can be too expensive or time-consuming for some people. If you're looking for natural alternative treatment practices to therapy, consider these options:
Inhaler therapy is an effective treatment strategy that uses a medicine called an inhaler to help you breathe more easily. Inhalers come in different shapes and sizes, some small enough to fit in your hand. Always use your inhaler correctly, as this will help you receive the full benefits of the medicine. Some inhalers are called dry powder inhalers because they contain a drug packaged as a powder rather than liquid or gel.
Homeopathy is a holistic approach to treating allergic asthma. Homeopathic remedies are made from natural materials and are used in tiny amounts. The treatments stimulate the body to produce antibodies that fight allergies. They also reduce inflammation, which an allergic reaction can cause.
Massage can be an effective treatment to relax and reduce stress. It also helps to improve blood flow, which can help clear mucus from your lungs. Massage can also help relax the muscles in your chest, making it easier for you to breathe. A set of studies revealed the improvements of massage in children with asthma.
This treatment is used in the caves of France, Poland, and Austria. It's not widely available in North America, but it's an option for those with access to it. The idea behind speleotherapy is that breathing in the air from a cave can help with asthma symptoms because the atmosphere contains carbon dioxide and other elements that treat inflammation and reduce allergy sensitivity.
Lifestyle Practices to Reduce Asthma Symptoms
Smoking can worsen asthma and cause coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Tobacco smoke makes breathing harder, causing your symptoms to become more severe. If you have asthma, avoid cigarette or secondhand smoke because it can cause an attack or inflate your airways.
A diet high in fruits, vegetables, fish, and whole grains are important for overall aspects of health. It's also helpful to avoid foods that contain allergens that may trigger an asthma attack. For example, avoid spicy or hot foods, fried or greasy foods, sweetened drinks like soda, and acidic foods like tomato sauce or citrus fruits like oranges or grapefruits If you have asthma symptoms when eating them or drinking their juices. Also, monitor your necessary water consumption.
Exercise is a great way to improve your breathing and should be considered one of the best asthma home remedies. The benefits of exercise include weight loss, which can help with asthma symptoms. Regular exercise also helps you sleep better, reduces stress levels, and gives you more energy throughout the day.
You can reduce allergens at home by using quality air filters, such as MERV13 filters, and other products that remove dust, pollen, and other particles from the air. You also can avoid being exposed to allergens as much as possible by staying inside during peak hours of pollination (such as early morning or evening) and avoiding outdoor activities when there is a heavy concentration of pollens in the air.
Keep Pets Out Of The Bedroom
The bedroom is a place to relax, not a place where you're breathing in your pet's dander. So if you have pets, ensure they don't sleep in your bed or near it. You can also try using a humidifier on high to prevent allergens from reaching their peak at night.
Asthma Action Plan
You can create a personalized asthma action plan. This will help you remember what to do if your symptoms return or get worse. It should include the following:
- Prescription medications and dosage
- Symptoms to watch for
- Emergency contacts (doctor's name, address, and phone number)
- Contraindications for exercise (some asthma medications may interact with activity)
- Inhaler technique and how to use it
What Are the Benefits of Breathing Exercises for COPD?
Breathing exercises are a great way to help you breathe and exercise more easily, relax, and sleep better. You can also use them to help you feel less anxious.
Breathing exercises include:
- Deep breathing
- Counting breaths
- Rhythmic breathing (also known as chest breathing)
What should I do if my breathing doesn't improve?
See your doctor immediately if your symptoms don't improve and you have trouble breathing. Your doctor may prescribe different treatments for asthma, increase the dose of medication, or add another medication to help you breathe better. If your symptoms worsen during the night, call 911 or go to an emergency room immediately.
A fever or chills with wheezing could be a sign of pneumonia (an infection in your lungs). See this page for information about how to treat and prevent pneumonia when you have asthma.
Can You Cure Asthma?
According to the American Lung Association, if you have asthma, there's no cure, and modern medicine can't cure it. However, some treatment plans can help you manage your asthma symptoms.
What is a Peak Flow Meter?
A peak flow meter is a small, hand-held device that measures how quickly and forcefully you can breathe. It's used to monitor asthma symptoms and lung function. The peak flow meter gives you an idea of how well your lungs are working by measuring how far you can breathe in one second (in liters), called the "forced expiratory volume" (FEV1) or "forced vital capacity" (FVC).
What are the tests used to diagnose asthma?
The most common tests to diagnose asthma are blood tests, a bronchodilator challenge, and spirometry.
Blood tests help determine the level of IgE antibodies in your blood. These antibodies trigger an allergic reaction when they find their specific source in the airways. This test can be done at any time but is usually done after a severe asthma episode to confirm the diagnosis.
A bronchodilator challenge involves breathing in medications that open up narrowed airways when you have asthma attacks. The doctor will administer prescribed inhalers if you're diagnosed with mild-to-moderate symptoms.
Spirometry measures how much air moves into and out of your lungs through forced exhalation with a spirometer. It's an instrument used by medical professionals for measuring lung capacity.
What are long-term control medications?
Long-term control medications are taken every day to prevent symptoms of asthma. They work by reducing inflammation and slowing down airways from constricting too often, which can make it easier for you to breathe. Long-term control medications include inhaled corticosteroids (ICS), leukotriene modifiers (LTMs), long-acting beta-agonists (LABA), and mast cell stabilizers.
What Are Quick-Relief Medications?
Quick-relief medications for asthma are drugs you take to treat your symptoms as soon as they start. They're available in various forms, including inhalers, nasal sprays, and tablets. The most common type of quick-relief medication is an inhaled bronchodilator.
What are inhaled bronchodilator medications?
Inhaled bronchodilator medications are used to open up the airways. They work by relaxing muscles in the airway and opening up the small airways so they can take in more air. These rescue medications can be taken as needed, but you shouldn't use them daily. Inhaled bronchodilator medications work for about 20 minutes after you take them and should not be used unless your doctor has prescribed them for you.
What is an allergy skin test?
As the name implies, an allergy skin test involves placing a small amount of allergen on your skin. After that, the doctor examines your skin for signs of an allergic reaction.
If it's positive, you're allergic to that allergen and must avoid coming into contact with it in the future (for example, by not letting pets in your home). If it's negative, then there is no reason to worry about being exposed to that particular substance again.
These tests can be performed in a doctor's office or hospital but are available at many pharmacies without requiring a prescription medicine.
You've learned how to manage asthma using simple home remedies. It's important to remember that these remedies are not a cure for asthma; if you're experiencing severe symptoms or frequent asthma flare-ups, it's best to consult with a doctor or specialist. Yet, if you'd like some easy ways to manage your overall wellness, Airzey is here to help.
In addition to our products, we also provide helpful tips and advice on keeping your home healthy and clean. Read here if you have any questions or concerns about asthma or more ways to improve the air quality of your home.