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What is Asthma by Kha Vo

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Asthma is a long-term disease that affects many people, mostly children. There are approximately 300 million people affected; a large majority being children because it is very common for children.  Asthma does not discriminate against anyone for the status of living; it affects anyone and everyone prone to allergies.  Because most people affected with Asthma do not have life threatening problems, it is not a priority in research for a cure.  There is no vaccine or pill to end asthma and there will probably never be one.  The best way to treat asthma is to be careful and be wary of the symptoms, as well as use relief medicines during an asthma attack.

An asthma attack occurs when heavy allergens are introduced to the system, such as tobacco smoke, pollution, pet fur, etc.  Asthma attacks can also be caused by emotional responses such as anger, stress, or shock.  Even medication could bring upon an onset of asthma if the disease is strong enough in a person.  It is apparent when an asthma attack occurs, the symptoms being wheezing, shortness of breath, chess tightness, rapid breathing, and pain.  Essentially, asthma victims will have difficulty breathing during an attack.  This leads to anxiety about not being able to breathe, making the attack worse.

During an asthma attack, the airways narrow and swell, producing extra mucus.  This airway blockage makes it hard to breathe for the affected.  These symptoms may also be common before an asthma attack, but the ultimate condition is the asthma attack, which can be relieved by using relief medicines.  The best thing to do when an onset occurs is to use relief medicine such as Singulair, Accolate, Xolair, Intal, Tilade, etc.  These drugs control the airway swelling that occurs during an asthma attack.

To learn if an individual is affected by asthma, a physician listens to the lungs to detect if there is wheezing.  If detected, allergy testing is helpful to identify what allergens cause an asthma attack.  This is the best prevention method, besides the medication used during the attack.  Removing one from allergens by cleaning up the house from dust, using protective allergy-proof bedding sheets, removing a pet if necessary, and staying away from tobacco, is the best way to prevent a serious deadly asthma onset.  Having a plan ready by writing it down and being able to recognize when the condition will happen is also important.

There is also an airflow device designed to measure how quickly air is moving in your lungs.  If a reading is between 50%-80%, there is most likely a moderate asthma attack.  If it goes below 50%, it is a severe asthma attack.  In the case of a severe asthma attack, which could include drowsiness confusion, blue colored lips, it is important to let someone head to the emergency room.  This is the absolute worst condition for asthma which could lead to death and other damage to the lungs.

It is really important to know how to prevent asthma.  Although asthma does not become a prevalent condition for most people, the fact that there have been 250,000 deaths by asthma according to a 2011 report by the Global Initiative for Asthma means that it is a lethal disease.  There is currently no definitive cure for asthma, but perhaps there will be in the future.  For now, however, it is best to remember the asthma prevention tips and keep away from allergens.




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