What is Asthma

Asthma is a disease that affects the lungs. disease that affects the lungs. It is a chronic (continuing) condition that requires ongoing medical care. Though one of the most common long-term disease of children, Asthma can affect the adults too.

Asthma may cause the airways to narrow, swell, and create additional mucus. This may make breathing challenging and cause coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath. For some people, Asthma is a mild annoyance, however others may experience a serious issue that could hinder their daily activities and result in a potentially fatal asthma attack.

Physiotherapy for bronchial asthma, asthma treatment

Potential causes of Asthma

Although there are many potential causes of asthma, genetic, ecological, and occupational variables have been connected to its occurrence. Allergy-related asthma can be influenced by “atopy,” the genetic propensity to develop allergic disease. But not all cases of asthma are allergic asthma. 

The development of asthma has also been linked to environmental factors or by a viral lung infection and air pollution. Commonly known as occupational asthma is when someone who has never had asthma may start having symptoms due to exposure to chemical fumes, gases, dust, or other substances at work.

Although asthma cannot be cured, its symptoms can be managed. The doctor can monitor the signs and symptoms and recommend therapy, as needed. It is frequently challenging to identify a single, direct cause of asthma. However, many factors have been associated with an elevated risk of getting the condition.

  • The likelihood of developing asthma is higher if a close relative such as a parent or sibling also has Asthma. 
  • People with other allergy disorders, such as eczema and rhinitis, are more likely to develop asthma.
  • Asthma prevalence rises with urbanization, due to many various lifestyle variables.
  • Early childhood experiences impact the lungs’ development and can raise the risk of asthma. Some of these are low birth weight, premature birth, tobacco smoke and other air pollution sources, and viral respiratory infections.
  • Allergies to pollen, dust mites, animal fur, or allergies to pollen, dust mites, animal fur, or feathers
  • Notably anti-inflammatory medications
  • Weather, like unexpected temperature fluctuations, cold air, wind and Changing weather conditions like temperature or humidity or cold air.
  • The disease of gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
  • Strong feelings like stress, joy, despair, or anxiety
  • Medicines like aspirin
  • Sulfites are food preservatives that can be found in various foods, including pickles, shrimp, beer, wine, dried fruits, and bottled lemon and lime juices.
  • Asthma risk is also thought to be increased by exposure to various environmental allergens and irritants, such as mold, dust mites, indoor and outdoor air pollution, and chemical, fume, and dust exposure at work.
  • Asthma is more likely to affect obese or overweight kids and adults.

Asthma symptoms

Asthma symptoms arise when the airways constrict, swell, or become inflamed. Typical asthmatic signs, especially at night, include Coughing and Wheezing, Difficulty in Breathing, Chest pressure, discomfort, or clenching. 

The following are early indicators of an asthma attack:

    • Coughing often, especially at night
    • Breathing difficulties or lack of breath
    • When exercising, feeling extremely worn out or weak
    • Coughing or wheezing
    • Being worn out, easily irritated, cranky, or moody.
    • Lung function varies or declines as detected by a peak flow meter
    • Cold or allergy symptoms (sneezing, runny nose, cough, nasal congestion, sore throat, and headache)
    • Difficulty sleeping

Techniques for Retraining Your Breathing

  • Breathing exercises recommended by the physiotherapists may be beneficial for people with mild to moderate asthma. By stabilizing respiratory rate and boosting expiratory airflow, breathing retraining seeks to normalize breathing patterns.
  • Another breathing exercise is the Buteyko breathing technique, designed to lessen hyperinflation. It was created based on the hypothesis that hyperventilation causes asthmatic bronchospasm.
  • Training the respiratory muscles reduces the tension that may be produced while breathing, which forces the use of the accessory muscles of inspiration. To make breathing harder, breathing exercises are performed with an external device. Inspiratory muscles are strengthened. As a result, making it simpler to breathe normally.
  • According to asthma, certain physical therapy techniques may help with mucus collection and produce the same amount of sputum as the gold-standard procedure.
  • Finding affordable substitutes for conventional pharmacotherapy is crucial due to the high prevalence of asthma and related healthcare expenses. Inspiratory muscle training (IMT), a method intended to improve the strength and stamina of the diaphragm and accessory muscles of respiration, is one of these affordable solutions.

How to prevent Asthma?

All reasonable steps must be taken to ensure exposure to asthma triggers and therefore it is important to understand the underlying cause for cough, wheeze, and gasp for air. There is no known treatment for asthma, however, there are ways to manage it better and avoid attacks.

  • Reducing exposure to smoke from cigarettes, incense, candles, fires, and fireworks.
  • It’s crucial to avoid allergens (items you’re allergic to) if you suffer from allergies and asthma. Exposure to allergens might temporarily worsen the inflammation in your airways, increasing the likelihood of an attack.
  • Long-term asthma treatments are designed to stop attacks and symptoms. Even if you are symptom-free, you must take them daily. They’ll reduce airway inflammation thus keeping asthma under control and making flare-ups less likely.
  • It is recommended to stay away from contagious people as it may worsen asthma problems. 
  • Staying vaccinated help protect from the flu virus, which can make asthma worse for days or weeks. flu and its complications, such as pneumonia may lead to hospitalization.

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How RCP health can help

Our Physiotherapists help patients with dyspnea and hyperventilation. They are trained in using various techniques including Breathing Retraining Techniques which are beneficial for mild or moderate asthma. It helps stabilize the respiratory rate and increase expiratory airflow. The physiotherapists have specialization in drafting Physical training exercises for asthmatics to exercise safely while following the College guidelines that provide tips and safety precautions. This also includes postures in standing and sitting which assists in managing asthma attacks.

They frequently educate patients on how chest infection can be prevented from occurring and on ways to manage asthma better.


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