Asthma: the first alarm bells

Difficulty breathing, but also nocturnal cough and wheezing: these are the typical symptoms of asthma attacks.

  • Asthma isn’t just allergic
  • Symptoms not to be underestimated
  • How to fight it: early diagnosis and adherence to therapy

Ask for free advice from a doctor right away

Difficulty in breathing, but also nocturnal cough and wheezing: these are the typical symptoms of asthma attacks , which are caused by chronic inflammation of the bronchi.

Asthma is one of the most common respiratory diseases in the world: it can affect anyone, regardless of gender or age, but it is more common in allergy sufferers or in those with a family history of this condition.

There is no definitive cure yet, but recognizing the symptoms can facilitate early diagnosis and help prevent or manage asthma attacks.

Asthma isn’t just allergic

People with asthma are characterized by chronic inflammation of the airways that causes hyperreactivity of the bronchi to some triggering factors.

Contact with an allergen (pollen, mites, animal hair, etc.), a respiratory infection, a slight physical effort, or even just a strong emotion, can in fact cause a so-called “asthma attack”, during which the progressive thickening of the bronchial wall, increased secretion of thick mucus and contraction of the bronchial muscles (bronchospasm) obstruct the passage of air, causing difficulty in inhaling and exhaling properly.

In the case of allergic asthma, “perennial” allergens, such as mites or animal hair, or “seasonal” allergens, such as pollen, can cause the attack.

The following table shows the main blooms for the different periods of the year.

 

Season Blooms
Late winter Alder, hazel, ash, cypress, poplar, willow
Spring Birch, hornbeam, oak , beech, ash, olive, cypress, plane tree, pine, grasses
Summer Ambrosia, mugwort, parietaria, romice, chestnut, pine
Autumn Ambrosia, parietaria

Symptoms not to be underestimated

Dyspnoea, dry cough especially at night, wheezing, feeling of tightness in the chest: these are the most frequent manifestations of an asthmatic crisis. They don’t always occur at the same time, and their intensity can vary from one asthma episode to another, and even from person to person.

Their sudden appearance should not be underestimated but, on the contrary, should lead to suspect this pathology and to undergo specialist examinations; or, in subjects who have already been diagnosed, to intervene promptly to try to prevent or manage the possible aggravation of symptoms, following the instructions of their doctor.

The wheezing is also called the “feeling of air” hunger despite being typical asthma, it is a symptom common to many other diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia and some heart disease . It resembles the feeling of breathlessness that one experiences during intense or prolonged physical activity; in asthmatics, however, it is also observed following a slight effort or even at rest, for example if one comes into contact with an allergen to which the patient is sensitized.

Other typical, but not exclusive, manifestations of asthma are the feeling of “weight” on the chest and wheezing , also called wheezing. If physiologically breathing occurs almost silently, during an asthma attack patients often emit a sort of rattle, due to the narrowing of the lumen of the bronchi and the massive presence of mucus that the air encounters during its passage.

Finally, especially at night, asthmatic patients often experience a dry and irritating cough , which worsens in the presence of respiratory infections , but which can also be present in conditions of good health. Recurrent episodes of coughing that are concentrated during the night, or even in the morning, are therefore another sign that should not be underestimated and to report to your doctor.

How to fight it: early diagnosis and adherence to therapy

To adequately control this pathology and prevent the onset of its symptoms, an early diagnosis is necessary, which must be followed by the prescription of a personalized therapeutic strategy.

However, once the most effective treatment has been identified, it is essential that the patient carefully follows the doctor’s instructions: it is believed that most cases of uncontrolled asthma (i.e. requiring more emergency interventions during the year) is due precisely to the poor adherence to treatment by the asthmatic subject.

 

by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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