Asthma is a chronic, long-term disorder that affects the air passages in the lungs. The airways are tubes that are responsible for carrying the air in and out of your lungs. In cases of Asthma, the airways can become inflamed and narrowed.
Asthma may affect people of all age groups and most often starts during childhood. Its symptoms include wheezing, cough, or a feeling of tightness in the chest. These symptoms may be mild to severe and can occur every day or only once in a while. There’s no single reason for Asthma, though; health experts believe that a combination of genetic and environmental factors may be the reason for the condition to flare up. There are specific triggers that can set off or aggravate asthma symptoms, such as cold air. These are called asthma triggers, and when these symptoms worsen, it is called an asthma attack. The other factors that can cause Asthma include family history, respiratory infections, exposure to early morning allergens, or poor hygiene. A treatment plan to manage your Asthma may include monitoring, avoiding triggers, and using medicines.
What are the causes of Asthma?
- A child’s first few years raise the risk of developing Asthma quite early in life if the fetus was exposed to cigarette smoke in the womb. This harmful exposure may also affect lung growth and development.
- Exposure to various microbes in the atmosphere, especially early in life, can affect the development of the immune system. These effects on the immune system may increase the risk of developing Asthma.
- The risk of developing Asthma in vulnerable people may also rise with the exposures that take place in the workplace, such as chemical irritants or industrial specks of dust. This type of Asthma is called occupational Asthma and may develop over the years.
- Asthma may worsen due to poor air quality from pollution or allergens. The pollutants may include the allergens in the air, such as pollen, dust, or other particles.
- The genes may also have a role in the development of Asthma since they affect the development of the immune system. The possibility of a child developing asthma increases, especially if one of the parents has the same.
How can Asthma be diagnosed and treated?
The diagnosis of Asthma is made based on your medical history, physical exam, and diagnostic tests. An asthma patient may be required to consult an asthma specialist, called a pulmonologist, or an allergy specialist.
Your doctor will make a treatment plan to manage your asthma symptoms and prevent future asthma attacks. The treatment typically depends on your age, asthma severity, and response to a given treatment option. The treatment may be adjusted until your asthma symptoms are controlled.
Most of the patients are treated with long-term daily medication, along with inhalers for short-term relief. An inhaler allows the medicine to enter into the mouth and airways to remove the blockages.
Call San Pedro at (310) 832-6487 or schedule an online appointment to know more about Asthma.