With the increasing number of people diagnosed with this disease, it is of great importance to have accurate knowledge about asthma. Here are a few simple ways to prevent asthma attacks and lead a healthy lifestyle.
An asthma attack occurs when the muscles around the airways of your lungs tighten and shut down, this is also known as a bronchospasm. In this condition, the inner lining of the airway gets inflamed or swollen which results in the production of thick mucus. These factors together lead to asthma attack symptoms such as short rapid breaths, anxiety, difficulty in performing regular tasks, severe wheezing, intermittent coughing, perspiration, and pale skin. When the muscles surrounding the bronchial tubes within the lungs constrict, they narrow the air passages thereby making it very difficult to breathe.
The duration of an asthma attack varies depending on how inflamed the airways have become. In mild attacks, the symptoms could last for just a few minutes, while a severe attack could take up to several hours before easing. In the case of severe attacks, medical help and treatment needs to be provided immediately. It is important to take extensive care along with adequate steps to prevent asthma attacks. Without adequate care, asthma attacks may lead to ‘cyanosis’ (development of bluish color around the lips) due to a lack of oxygen in the blood. Cyanosis may cause a patient to lose consciousness, and may eventually lead to death.
There are certain common triggers that can easily inflame the lungs and can cause an asthma attack. The following are a few measures that can be taken in order to prevent asthma attacks:
- Avoid exposure to dust
There should be minimal exposure to any area that is dust/dirt prone. Exposure to dust, smoke or any allergen can cause increased inflammation in the airways, thereby increasing the chances of an asthma attack.
- Maintain basic hygiene
It is imperative for you to maintain cleanliness and basic hygiene in the environment that you live in, especially to get rid of roaches or any other insects to prevent asthma attacks. Exposure to insects is a common allergy trigger among asthmatic children belonging to various urban areas.
- Avoid cold/flu
Patients can prevent asthma attacks by merely avoiding close contact with anyone suffering from a viral cold or flu. Once the infection is caught, flu and cold lead to worsened conditions such as difficulty in breathing, anxiety, persistent coughing, perspiration, etc. that may lead to an asthma attack.
- Keep a safe distance from animals
It is recommended to not keep a pet inside the house of an asthma patient. Most people are allergic to the dander of pets which is a very common trigger for asthma. It may be difficult but it is important to maintain safe distance or avoid contact with pets as much as possible in order to prevent asthma attacks.
- Avoid excessive running/exhaustive exercises
This is a common trigger among asthmatic children. Doing vigorous workouts and exercises in humid, cold or dry environments only worsens the condition of the prevailing illness. Such strenuous activities are only recommended under medical supervision and that too, after taking the prescribed pills to prevent asthma attacks.
- Protect yourself from tobacco smoke
Smoke is an extremely common trigger and must be avoided. Passive smoking, smoke on clothes, furniture, curtains, etc. also leads to irritation and inflammation inside the sensitive airways that can make them narrower resulting in more frequent asthma attacks. Smoking results in damage of the airways and gradual loss of lung functioning. Hence in order to prevent asthma attacks, one must stay away from smoke at any cost.
- Stress management
Anxiety, stress, and mental pressure can lead to severe asthma attacks. To prevent asthma attacks, it is important to lead a rather stress-free life or at least find an alternative to curb stress or else it may worsen the prevailing condition of the asthmatic. Some simple ways to prevent asthma attacks include practicing yoga, healthy breathing exercises, and taking measures towards stress management.
- Control your allergies
It does no harm to have a regular check up with the doctor to understand your various allergies so you can adhere to the prescribed medication and prevent asthma attacks.
Extensive care must be taken at all times to avoid any unnecessary irritation that could affect the airways thereby worsening the asthmatic patient’s condition. By following these simple steps to prevent asthma attacks, you can lead a more normal lifestyle irrespective of your medical background.