Updated: November 17, 2017
Asthma is a long-term inflammatory disease of the airways of the lungs. The problem in the bronchial tubes that carry air into your lungs can make it hard for you to breathe. These airways get so narrow that air can not move freely causing serious wheezing and breathlessness, known as asthma attacks. There is no cure, but most people can control their symptoms.
Exercise-induced bronchoconstriction (EIB), or exercise-induced asthma (EIA) can be developed in healthy people when exercising. Your physician can develop a management plan to keep your symptoms under control before, during and after physical activity.
People with a family history of allergies or asthma are more prone to developing asthma. Many people with asthma also have allergies which is called allergic asthma.
By inhaling fumes, gases, dust or other potentially harmful substances while on the job can induce occupational asthma. The majority of children can develop childhood asthma before the age of five.
Asthma is caused by a combination of environmental and genetic interactions. Onset before age 12 is more likely due to genetic influence, while onset after 12 is more likely due to environmental influence.
Exposure to various irritants and substances that trigger allergies (allergens) can trigger signs and symptoms of asthma. Asthma triggers are different from person to person and can include:
Asthma symptoms vary from person to person. The most common symptom is wheezing. This is a scratchy or whistling sound when you breathe. Other symptoms include:
Children with asthma may show the same symptoms as adults with asthma. Symptoms in children include:
Patterns in asthma symptoms can help make a diagnosis of the type. It is important to pay attention when symptoms occur. These can occur
A number of factors are thought to increase your chances of developing asthma. These include: