Do you have Asthma?
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory airway disease characterized by intermittent airway obstruction and hyperreactivity (narrowing). Pollen, animal dander, strong noxious odors, molds, and dust are called triggers. These triggers with those who have asthma cause inflammation increased bronchial hyperresponsiveness (narrowing) and recurrent episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing.
Every day in America:
The number of people with current asthma according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s 2015 and 2016 National Health Interview Surveys (NHIS): An estimated 24.6 million people, including 6.1 million children, have asthma. More than 11.5 million people with asthma, including nearly 3 million children, report having had one or more asthma attacks in 2015.
What are the symptoms of Asthma?
- Shortness of breath
- Tightness in chest
- Sucking in (a person with asthma tries to draw air into the lungs)
- Prolonged breathing out (breathing out may take twice as long as breathing in)
- Faster breathing
*In severe asthma there is poor air entry and the chest is silent
The symptoms of asthma are usually worse during the night, but an asthma attack can happen at any time. Asthma attacks can range from mild discomfort to life-threatening attacks where breathing stops completely.
How is Asthma Diagnosed?
There are many factors to determine whether a person has asthma:
- Patient’s medical history
-Do you cough when you exercise
-Do you own pets?
-Do you smoke or anyone in your home smoke?
-What makes these symptoms worse or better?
-Shortness of breath
-Red, itchy patches on the skin
- Family medical history
- Physical exams
- Laboratory tests
- Spirometry/pulmonary function testing. These tests are easy and painless. You simply breathe into an instrument, which measures the lungs volume and the rate in which air is taken in and out of the lungs.
How is Asthma Treated?
- Wash your hands often
- Keep your hands away from your face and mouth
- Get a yearly flu shot
- Practice allergy control
Control your environment:
- Avoid irritants like cigarette smoke, perfumes, car exhaust, paint fumes, incense, scented candles and potpourri
- Avoid known allergens
- Allergy proof your home
- Use your controller medications/inhalers as prescribed
- Use recommended allergy medication as prescribed
- Use rescue medications as prescribed*
Rescue inhalers are medications that cause the airways to relax so the airways can open wider, they are not meant to be used for daily use. If you are using your rescue inhaler more than 3 times a week, your asthma is NOT controlled and call your health care provider!
- Are written to help encourage self-management of asthma. Plans include:
- A list of your triggers and how to avoid them
- Written instructions for taking asthma medication
- Information on what to do during an asthma episode
- Instructions on when to call a doctor and list of emergency telephone numbers.
*Action plans should be updated at least once a year. For assistance call your health care provider or 614-273-2843
Our Asthma Outreach Coordinator provides:
Asthma management services are available to both children and adults. The in-home program, provided by a qualified staff member, can be scheduled and tailored to your needs. This program helps you come up with an Asthma Action Plan tailored to you. In addition provide equipment to help decrease triggers as much as possible such as HEPA filtered vacuum cleaners, mattress covers, and pillow covers.
- In-home assessments of specific needs and individual goals
- Hands-on demonstrations of medical devices and breathing techniques
- Equipment and management tools, including peak flow meters, nebulizer machines medication spacers and aerosol supplies
- Ongoing support and resources
- Personalized, written asthma management plans
- Referrals for insurance, physicians, allergists and prescription assistance
Call the Lung Health Clinic (614) 273-2843 to learn more, schedule an appointment, or donate.
Information on lung health problems is always available, no matter your income or insurance type.
- American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology
- Mayo Clinic
- American Association for Respiratory Care
- American Thoracic Society
- Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
Please contact the Lung Health Clinic (614) 273-2843 for more information, to schedule an appointment, to learn more about asthma, to make a donation or to volunteer.
Information on lung health concerns is always available regardless of your income or insurance status.