Information on common myths about asthma

(Last Updated: Aug 6, 2007)

With all the information on sexually transmitted disease you may want to be extra cautious when it comes to being in close emotional and physical contact with your partner. A direct answer to your question is "No" unlike a common cold and cough, asthma cannot spread by simply kissing a person on the lips as it is a non-contagious disease. One of the common myths about asthma is that you can grow out of it. Asthma is a chronic lung disease and stays in the human body long term and can only be controlled but not eliminated. One of the interesting facts about asthma is that a person with a family history of asthma is more likely to develop the disease himself.

If one parent has the disease then the person has a 30% chance of developing it whereas if both parents suffer from asthma there is a 70% chance the child will develop asthma. One of the other myths about asthma is that people with this condition should never exercise. The truth is that swimming is a good exercise for asthma patients. However exercising in cold or dry air can sometimes trigger the condition for some people. Distinguishing between facts and myths can help you understand this disease better.

answered by S S

Is asthma contagious?

For those who are keen on knowing if asthma is contagious, they should understand that although asthma is a chronic disease of the airways and lungs, it is not contagious. Asthma is known to cause an inflammation in the airways which in turn increases the mucus production thereby making it difficult to breathe. There are two different types of asthma namely allergic asthma or extrinsic asthma and intrinsic asthma. In allergic or extrinsic asthma the triggers of asthma are the allergens that may be present in the air such as animal dander or pollen. When these allergens are inhaled they tend to stimulate the production of mucus, inflammation of the airways and also create antibodies.

Allergic asthma is one of the different types of asthma that is also related to allergic reactions such as hay fever. On the other hand, the intrinsic type of asthma is caused by chemical exposure, exercise or stress which in turn results in the development of hypersensitivity in the respiratory tract. This causes inflammation and increases the production of mucus. Some of the symptoms that are observed in different types of asthma are wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and pain as well as shortness of breath which could occur at any time of the day or night.

answered by G R

What are the most common triggers of an asthmatic attack?

Although the exact causes of asthma are unknown there are a number of factors which can trigger this disease. Some of the most common triggers of asthma attack include indoor allergens such as pet dander and dust mites, outdoor triggers like moulds, pollen, pollution, tobacco and cigarette smoke and also a number of chemical irritants. Some of the other triggers of asthma attack could be cold or dry air, extreme anger or fear and strenuous physical exercise. In many cases asthma attacks can even be triggered by medications like beta blockers, anti-inflammatory drugs and even aspirin. The signs and symptoms of asthma attack become more pronounced when the airways get filled, tightened or inflamed with mucus.

Some of the most common signs and symptoms of asthma attack are chronic coughing mostly at night, breathlessness, wheezing and pressure, pain or tightness in the chest. These symptoms may vary from person to person and it is not necessary that everyone who suffers from asthma experiences the same symptoms. Some of the early warning signs and symptoms of asthma could also include weakness or tiredness especially while exercising, feeling easily upset or moody, constant signs of allergies or cold and experiencing trouble sleeping well.

answered by A S

Can a asthma patient prevent an asthma attack?

In order to prevent an asthma attack you should be able to identify the triggers of asthma such as air pollution, dust mites, cigarette smoke, fragrances , sinusitis, a cold virus and so on. Those who are prone to asthmatic attacks should also stay away from fireplaces as they are known to trigger an asthmatic attack. In some cases, to prevent an asthma attack you should ensure that you are not suffering from acid reflux as asthma is also known to be caused by GERD or acid reflux in the stomach. To prevent an asthma attack on account of allergens, you could also install an air purifier which will help in purifying the air in your surrounding.

Additionally, you should also avoid certain foods to prevent an asthma attack such as eggs, milk, seafood, nuts and so on as they are some of the commonly known allergens. As a first aid for asthma attack you should immediately remove the person from the area where the triggers or the allergens would be present and encourage the patient to be calm as far as possible. The individual suffering from an asthma attack should also be encouraged to inhale slowly and deeply. An important first aid for asthma attacks is to provide the individual with inhalers as they tend to loosen the airways, promoting easier breathing.

answered by G M

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