Are you asking yourself the question, do I have asthma? If you do have it, you’re not alone since 19.2 million adults in the U.S. 18 and over have it as well.
Are you wondering what signs to look for to know if you have it or not? In this article, explore some of the tell-tale signs you might have asthma. Read on to explore more about this condition to figure out whether you have it or not, and what you can do about it.
What Is Asthma?
It’s a chronic and long-term disease of the airways. Your airways are the tubes that carry air into your lungs. What occurs is a narrowing and inflammation of the bronchial tubes which then cause airflow limitations.
While the muscles around your bronchial tubes are relaxed, with asthma they’re inflamed and sensitive. During asthma triggers, the muscles around the bronchial tubes will constrict further, and your airways can fill up with mucus.
Common signs of asthma include a whistling or wheezing sound while breathing, shortness of breath, coughing, or chest tightness. Symptoms of asthma might be triggered by different environmental effects from seasonal allergies, pollution, colds, or exercises.
Symptoms can be worse in the morning or at night. If you think you might have asthma, it’s a good idea to speak with your doctor to receive a diagnosis. Keep in mind that you might only experience symptoms during an attack.
Less Common Symptoms
Everyone is different, and asthma can impact each person differently. One lesser-known symptom is rapid breathing. This is when you have difficulty releasing air from your lungs, which can lead to rapid breathing.
Asthma signs can also include a worse cold. While some people might get sick more often than others, people with asthma tend to have symptoms of colds that last longer than others might experience. Do you notice that colds tire you out more than they do for others?
Another symptom is difficulty sleeping. You might wake up due to wheezing, shortness of breath, or coughing.
This is due to your body producing higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol that can lead to inflammation. This inflammation can impact your airways which can cause coughing.
While some might experience trouble during exercises, if you notice chest tightness and wheezing during a workout, you might have asthma. You might notice that it’s harder for you to catch your breath during a workout.
Constant fatigue can be the definition of many different conditions. Asthma can cause fatigue due to your body not being able to collect enough oxygen.
This lack of oxygen can cause tiredness. If you feel tired or any of these other symptoms, it’s a good idea to speak with your doctor.
What To Do if You Think You Have Asthma?
If you’re asking yourself, do I have asthma, it’s a good idea to speak with your doctor. While there’s no cure for asthma, there are different methods for managing this condition. A diagnosis from your doctor can ensure that you’re on the right track.
If left untreated, asthma can be fatal. Don’t let your symptoms go unnoticed. When you go in for the diagnosis, that’s the sooner you can start treatment.
Asthma Treatment Options
There are certain medications you can take to help your asthma attacks. Medications are available which can help prevent asthma attacks as well.
One example of asthma treatment is an inhaled long-acting beta-agonist. They help relax the muscles around your airways. This medication will be taken in combination with an inhaled corticosteroid.
Leukotriene modifiers are another option to help relax the muscles around your airways. They can be taken in liquid or pill form.
Rescue inhalers are used to help decrease your symptoms. This is due to them relaxing the muscles around your airways. Relaxing these muscles means it can help you breathe easier.
An Action Plan for Asthma
Speak with your doctor about coming up with an action plan for your asthma. It’s important to come up with this in order to help you notice the signs and preventative measures.
Your action plan should include what to do during an emergency, contact information for your doctor, and controlling asthma triggers. It should also go over how to know if your symptoms become worse.
In your action plan, you should keep track of your symptoms. For example, use the colors green, yellow, and red. Green means there are no symptoms that you notice, and the symptoms seem under control.
Yellow means that your symptoms are happening more or seem worse. This might mean you’ll need to take more medication or change your treatment.
Next is red which means your symptoms are severe. Red means you’ll need treatment immediately, and might require several medicines.
It’s important to keep up with your treatment plan, and home remedies can be in addition to your treatment. Black seed oil might help open your airways as well as caffeine. Keep in mind that caffeine doesn’t work as quickly as medications though.
Practice breathing exercises throughout the day. This might help you to lower the amount of medication you’re taking.
Answering the Question To, Do I Have Asthma?
Now that you’ve explored the answer to the question, do I have asthma, you should have a better idea whether you might or not. Would you like to read more health content? For everything from health to fitness, check out our other articles today.