Asthma is a common long term inflammatory disease of the airways of the lungs.Asthma is a chronic disease of the airways that makes breathing difficult. With asthma, there is inflammation of the air passages that results in a temporary narrowing of the airways that carry oxygen to the lungs. This results in asthma symptoms, including coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.
If you frequently experience shortness of breath or you hear a whistling or wheezy sound in your chest when you breathe, you may have asthma—a chronic condition that causes inflammation and narrowing of the bronchial tubes, the passageways that allow air to enter and leave the lungs.
What happens during an asthma attack?
- The muscles around your airways tighten up, narrowing the airway.
- Less air is able to flow through the airway.
- Inflammation of the airways increases, further narrowing the airway.
- More mucus is produced in the airways, undermining the flow of air even more
- Shortness of breath
- Chest tightness
Outdoor allergens, such as pollens from grass, trees and weeds
- Indoor allergens, such as pet dander, dust mites and mold
- Certain drugs and food additives
- Irritants in the air, such as smoke, chemical fumes and strong odors
- Colds, the flu or other illnesses
- Exercise (although people with asthma can benefit from some exercise)
- Weather conditions, such as cold air or extremely dry, wet or windy weather
Common allergens that cause allergic asthma include
- dust mites
- pet dander