Asthma is an allergic inflammation of the lungs, which can be
triggered by air pollutants, dust mites, pollens, molds, dust, animal
dander, chemicals, foods, exercise, or even temperature changes.
When a person with asthma comes into contact with something that irritates their airways (an asthma trigger), the muscles around the walls of the airways tighten so that the airways become narrower and the lining of the airways becomes inflamed and starts to swell. Sometimes sticky mucus or phlegm builds up which can further narrow the airways. The illustration on the right shows a cross section of the airways, with and without inflammation.
These triggers produce the symptoms of allergies and asthma, itchy,
runny nose and eyes, blocked sinuses, coughing and wheezing. In a severe asthma attack,
breathing becomes very difficult and can often result in a trip to the emergency room.
Asthma Can Be Prevented By Eliminating The Main Triggers
Doctors and researchers agree that the single most important thing
that parents can do to prevent their child from developing asthma in
the first place is to eliminate or significantly reduce dust mite
allergens in the home.
"Clinical studies have revealed that avoidance of dust mite
allergens in early childhood can prevent the onset of asthma..."
Michael LeNoir Md
Dust mite allergens are known to play a major role in asthma
development. Researchers have determined that other important
allergens (after dust mites) that also need to be eliminated from the
home are cats, certain types of mold, dogs, cockroaches and
tobacco smoke. It is a popular misconception that children will
"outgrow" asthma. It is a severe and potentially life-threatening
illness that should be taken seriously. Long term use of steroid drugs
is not recommended by doctors and has serious side effects. Making
these preventative environmental changes is a much more viable,
healthy and preferable alternative. If you, or your child are already
suffering from asthma or allergies, these measures will certainly help.
If you find that they do not entirely eliminate asthma and allergy
symptoms, there are safe, natural and effective drug-free solutions
available to help you and your family.
The usual symptoms of asthma are:
Not everyone will get all of these symptoms. Some people experience them from time to time; a few people may experience these symptoms all the time.
- shortness of breath
- tightness in the chest.