World asthma day is an annual event organized by the global initiative for asthma (GINA) to
improve awareness and care of asthma around the world.
"You can control your asthma", is the message this year for world asthma day, may 6.
The general trend, witnessed worldwide, is that the incidence of asthma continues to rise.
There are close to 300 million asthma patients in the world of which 30 million are in Indian
Studies conducted by a host of agencies indicate that the prevalence of asthma among
youngsters is on rise.
Asthma: What is it?
Asthma is a complex condition that affects the airway, the small tubes that carry air in and out
of the lungs.
During an asthma attack, the lining of the bronchial tubes swell, causing the airways to narrow
and making it difficult for air to travel freely.
It may also cause an increase in the production of mucus, making the obstruction worse.
Cough may develop is an attempt to clear the airways.
All of these changes makes breathing difficult and sometimes cause a feeling of not getting
enough air into the lungs.
What are the symptoms of Asthma?
Common symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness and excess
Symptoms may occur several times in a day or week in affected individuals and for some people
become worse during physical activity or at night.
What causes it?
Asthma is a complex disease with many contributing factors.
Asthma is known to run in families and you are more likely to develop it if one or both of your
parents are asthmatic.
Increase in urbanization and subsequent pollution.
Exposure to inhaled substance and particles that may irritate and inflame the airway, such as :
Indoor allergies like house dust mites in bedding, carpets and stuffed furniture, pollution and
pet dander and outdoor allergies such as pollens and moulds
1. Air pollution
2. Smoking is a major risk factor for asthma in adults.
3. Other triggers can include cold air, extreme emotional arousal such as anger or fear, and
physical exercise. Certain medications like non steroid anti-inflammatory drugs and beta
blockers can also trigger asthma.
Who is affected by asthma?
Asthma affects people all over the world and all ages.
In India, asthma accounts for a majority of chronic disease cases.
Asthma is the most common chronic disease among children.
How is asthma diagnosed?
The diagnosis of asthma begins with a detailed history and physical examination.
Airflow in the lungs measured using a spirometer, a machine which is generally used to measure
the amount of inhaled air, in order to determine which specific substances trigger the airway
inflammation that can lead to asthma attacks.
The asthma and allergy foundation of America estimates that roughly 70 percent of asthmatics
have what called allergic asthma in which combination of allergies play a dramatic role in closing
airways and causing asthma attacks.
World health organization recognizes asthma as a disease of major public health importance as
it imposes a huge burden on human life.
A new study of over 1000 people carried out by asthma Australia shows that poor asthma
control can affect dating, sexual pleasure, people careers and even spending time with their
Recurrent asthma symptoms frequently cause sleeplessness, daytime fatigue, reduced activity
levels and school and work absenteeism.
Reducing your exposure to allergies can have a positive effect on your asthma and allergic
rhinitis and may even reduce te amount of drugs that you need to take.
Thus allergen avoidance should be the prime part of management strategy.
Homeopathic medicines are proven effective in treatment of both allergic rhinitis and asthma
Don’t let asthma hold you back.
By following very simple protocols, you can reduce your problems and have a greater control
over the symptoms.
Although asthma is totally controllable, there are innumerable cases of its recurrence simply
because patients adopt a lax approach once they start getting better.
Reducing exposure to allergies as much as you can and following your medicine routine strictly
and religiously can have great positive effects on your asthma and can help you regain control
over your day to day activities and life in general .
Should i exercise if i have asthma?
Exercise can help control asthma symptoms and even reduce the amount of medications you
Before starting an exercise program, talk to your doctor and decide what activities are best
suited for you.
TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR ASTHMA
Understand and avoid your asthma triggers.
Use prescribed medicines even when you feel well.
Work closely with your doctor to manage the symptoms.
Losing weight can help in managing asthma.
Active lifestyle can help to improve lung function.
A diet that includes a high level of nutrients can boost the immune system and help ward off
colds and flu- both common asthma triggers.
Avoiding processed and artificially flavored foods such as pastries, chocolates, jellies, chilled
drinks, etc., reduces flare-ups.