Living with asthma can sometimes be a frightening experience, until you know and understand what triggers the attack. The key is to know the culprit, and then attempt to manage your asthma onsets.
There are many things that can cause asthma attacks. Everyone's biological chemistry is different. Certain allergies can create an attack (mold, grass, foods, pollen, dust, pets and cockroaches). An allergy test with a specialist can zoom in on the specific allergies that trigger your asthma attack. Once your test has been confirmed, you will know what things you can attempt to avoid.
Dust triggers are tough but doable to avoid. Remove dust collectors such as stuffed toys, etc. Wear a mask while dusting. Damp mop the floors daily. You should vacuum and dust floors and furniture at least one or two times per week. Wipe down tables and countertops with a dry cloth. Dust covers on the mattresses will also help keep particles from accumulating. Carpets should be removed.
Certain non allergens can also trigger an asthma symptom that you are not allergic to (cold air, smoke, lung infection from a chest cold, stress). If it's cold out, cover your nose and mouth with a scarf to avoid breathing cold air. Same for smoke or avoid it altogether.
Sometimes, physical activity can be the only thing that causes certain people to have an attack. If you are one of those people, you will notice a shortness of breath at the beginning of exercises. The attack can escalate 5 or 10 minutes after you complete exercising. After you stop the activity, symptoms usually disappear within 20 to 30 minutes. Ask your doctor if you should use your quick relief inhaler before exercising. Always keep the medication with you at all times.
Avoid strenuous exercises such as tennis, running, basketball due to the possibility of an attack. Other physical activities that would be better are walking, easy bike riding, or swimming. Be mindful and avoid exercise if you are sick with a cold or the flu, when it's cold outside, or when the pollen counts are high (if you have pollen allergies).
It's not easy knowing you have asthma. However, it is less frightening because the positive news is that you can learn how to manage it and be able to live a happy, healthy lifestyle.
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