Asthma is common condition that affects thousands of people all over the world. There is no cure for asthma but there are definite ways to improve your quality of life. Living with asthma can be easy as long as you can figure out what triggers your asthma attacks and how to avoid these triggers. By improving your stamina, avoiding triggers, and taking the right precautions you can live a happy, healthy life with asthma.
- Stop smoking. Smoking is a very nasty, unhealthy habit. Regardless of its danger to the body, smoking is also a toxic pollutant. Smoking decreases lung functioning which in a person with asthma lung function is already decreased due to inflammation and narrowing of the airways. If you smoke and don’t have asthma, smoking cigarettes can actually cause you to develop asthma.
Not only does smoking affect asthma but also secondhand smoke is the leading irritant for people with asthma. If you live with someone who smokes, make him or her smoke outside. This decreases your exposure to the secondhand smoke, which is sometimes deadlier than smoking itself. Purchase an air filter to eliminate remanence of smoke within your home. Although your best bet is to stop smoking or get your family to stop smoking.
- Increase your water intake. We all know that the body is made up of 75% of water, however most people don’t take in enough water on a daily basis. Our body excretes water very easily through digestion, going to the bathroom, spit, and sweat. All of this water needs to be replaced somehow. It is recommended to drink 8, 8 ounce glasses of water a day. Who do you know that does this? Well whatever the reason is that you don’t, its time to start doing it. If you have an adversity to water, drinking tea or adding lemon to your water is also good for you. When you have asthma, rapid breathing can cause dehydration. Therefore avoiding dehydration is easily mastered by drinking enough liquids throughout the day.
- Breath from the diaphragm. The diaphragm is the most efficient muscle used to help breathing. However when someone has asthma the diaphragm can become weak and flattened due to the increased pressure during asthma attacks. The diaphragm is important to effectively breathe in oxygen rich air and breath out the by-product carbon dioxide. To strengthen the diaphragm do exercises in breathing 3-4 times a day for about 5 minutes. You can sit or lay down but to do it correctly. Your belly should push outward when you breathe in and the abdominals should contract when you breathe out.
If you start to have an asthma attack, it is important to slow down the breathing process. This allows more oxygen rich air to enter the body and keep the pressure within the lungs the same as outside the body. If not breathing becomes too rapid and shallow which increases the pressure negatively and doesn’t allow enough oxygen rich air into the lungs. Take deep, slow breaths while relaxing the entire body, which reduces the demand upon the body.
- Swim. Swimming is the best cardiovascular exercise for the body. Additionally for people who have asthma it also seems to lessen the spasm of the bronchial tubes. If you don’t like water or can’t swim walking or biking are also good to improve cardiovascular stamina. Start slow and build up. Don’t over do yourself. If you feel a spasm coming on stop exercising.
- Don’t stop your medications. It is never a good idea to stop taking a prescribed medication without consulting your doctor, especially if the medication is for asthma. Inhalers are an important lifeline for people with asthma and have saved many lives. If you are trying to control your asthma through alternative medicine, I applaud you; however keep your inhaler for extenuating circumstances. Additional asthma medications are available for people with acute asthma. Anti-inflammatories and Bronchodilators are the two types of medications on the market. Anti-inflammatories reduce the swelling of the airways while bronchodilators relieve the symptoms of asthma. Talk to your doctor about the medications you are on and what can be done for additional relief.
- Check your allergies. Many people who have asthma have additional allergies, which can trigger an asthma attack. Allergies are an immune disorder, which causes hypersensitivity to specific environmental allergens. A simple allergy test can be done to see if desensitization shots may help relieve the problem. Ask your doctor about allergy testing.