Living with any chronic illness can be difficult and it’s not uncommon to feel like you’re alone and no one understands what it’s like. Unfortunately, when it comes to battling asthma, that’s far from the truth. Approximately 25 million people are living with asthma in the US alone.
While that might be a comfort, when you’re living with moderate to severe asthma symptoms, looking for options for treating asthma that will give you a better quality of life and hoping clinical research will one day find a cure, is a small consolation.
Although Ascada Research may not have a cure for asthma, we are conducting clinical research studies and continue to discover important ways those living with asthma can live a quality life.
Asthma is a respiratory condition that is caused by inflammation in the lungs and airways. No one is completely sure what causes asthma, but we do know that it can cause dangerous and even deadly breathing difficulties for sufferers.
Many environmental factors can trigger asthma attacks and asthma sufferers need to have a good asthma management plan.
Asthma is a lifelong condition that is usually diagnosed in childhood. Asthma symptoms may start with wheezing or difficulty breathing and can become more severe over time.
Many asthma sufferers can go a long time between asthma attacks too, while others may have symptoms that flare up more frequently.
Since asthma can be very dangerous, it’s important to have a strategy for treating and managing asthma. This usually includes:
Often, because asthma starts in childhood, parents need to make these changes and adjustments on behalf of their child. This makes treating asthma effectively and taking the right steps even more important, as children can have difficulty articulating when they are struggling to breathe.
Like any other chronic health condition, battling asthma is not something that is only about medication.
While medication like inhalers can reduce the symptoms of an asthma attack, the ultimate goal when treating asthma is to reduce the number of attacks and their intensity. This means taking a multi-pronged approach.
A healthy lifestyle is a foundation for good asthma treatment and many asthma studies link diet, exercise, and other wellness factors to living better with asthma.
When asthma is well managed, sufferers will have fewer attacks and they will likely be less intense. They will be able to participate more in events involving work or school and can enjoy a wide variety of day-to-day activities.
Treating asthma effectively also helps to ensure that the lungs stay healthy and this helps to prevent other potential complications or conditions.
In the course of our clinical research at Ascada Research, we have found that many asthma sufferers (particularly children) benefit from creating an asthma management plan.
When you are first diagnosed with asthma, it can be hard to remember what you need to do to prevent attacks, manage symptoms and stay on top of treating asthma. An asthma management plan summarizes all of these things previously mentioned and is an easy reference guide that includes:
Ideally, when you create an asthma management plan, you should have several copies in different places. For instance, you could have one at home, one at work or school, and one in the car, so that no matter where you are, you always have access to this vital information.
Unfortunately, for most people battling asthma, many of the common triggers of asthma attacks are around us every day. This makes it very hard to avoid them completely, however, knowing what might trigger an acute asthmatic episode can still help to reduce the frequency and severity you experience them.
Some of the most common triggers for asthma sufferers are:
Most people will be affected differently by these things and some are likely to be more of an issue than others. However, there’s no way of knowing what your response will be until it happens, so if you are going to have a new, potentially triggering experience, make sure you have your inhaler ready.
While we currently have to rely on medications that prevent and relieve asthma symptoms, there is ongoing clinical research by companies like Ascada Research. Every time we conduct another asthma study, we’re one step closer to better treatments and medications and ideally, one day, a cure for asthma.
In the meantime, if you are new to treating asthma for yourself or a loved one, be sure to follow your doctor’s directions very carefully. Do as much research as possible, find out what your triggers are, and learn to avoid things that tend to cause asthma flare-ups.
You can live a long, healthy life with asthma, you just need to take extra precautions.