Asthma can be an extremely debilitating, sometimes deadly, condition if it is not handled in a correct manner. As a woman who has dealt with asthma my entire life, I have learned some key ways to manage and decrease my asthma attacks by doing these simple things.
I learned my triggers. There are numerous triggers for asthma sufferers, including exercise, cat or dog hair, smoke, pollen, fog, cold air, dust, mold and even emotion. Essentially, anything can set off an asthma attack. It is vital that personal triggers are recognized. My personal triggers are cold air, smoke and vigorous exercise. Once I discovered this, I was able to avoid smokers and cold weather and change my exercise regimen.
I know my body and my medicine. My body warns me of an impending attack. I pay close attention to my breathing, how my chest feels and if I am experiencing an increase in mucus buildup. Noticing a change in these things early enables me to take my asthma medication and prevent an attack from happening at all. It is important to be familiar with the medication as well, if it is not used properly it may not work.
I inform and educate the people I am commonly around of my condition and how to handle it. An asthma attack can hit unexpectedly and escalate quickly. So quickly that sometimes I might not be able to handle the attack or take medicine by myself. In this case, it is of great importance that the people around me know I have asthma, can recognize an attack and know what to do in an emergency situation. I’m prepared. I always have an inhaler on hand, everywhere I go. I never know when an attack might occur.
I learned to control my breathing and emotions. During an asthma attack it is so easy to panic and make breathing even more difficult. I have learned to keep myself calm. I know that the faster my heartbeat is the more oxygen I need. So I slow things down, sit or even lay on the floor. I relax and focus on breathing until the medicine kicks in.
I aimed to live a healthy lifestyle. Physical fitness and healthy eating can do wonders for asthma sufferers. I use to be very overweight and that only put more stress on my respiratory system. Lack of exercise also weakened my lungs and decreased my oxygen intake. Changing my habits improved my life.
I research. I keep myself updated and educated about my condition, it is one of the best ways to deal with it and overcome it. I keep up with new treatments and studies because not knowing a key detail of this condition is dangerous. Asthma attack can kill, take it seriously.