Asthma is one of the most common respiratory diseases in the world. According to reports, over 339 million people have some form of asthma. Medically speaking, asthma is an inflammatory disease that affects the airways, leading to difficulty breathing, wheezing, and other respiratory symptoms. The mechanisms involved in asthma are extremely complex and involve a hypersensitivity immune reaction that recruits inflammatory cells to the airways.
The Causes of Asthma
Similar to other inflammatory conditions with autoimmune components, the exact causes of asthma are not clear yet. Scientists believe that this disease results from a combination of genetic predisposition and environmental triggers. Your risk of developing asthma increases if you have one or more of the factors listed below.
Genetics – having a close relative with asthma increases your risk of getting the disease.
Recurrent viral infections – viral infections are highly suspected to be the trigger of asthma, especially during childhood.
Atopia – this concept refers to the predisposition to developing allergic/immune diseases, such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, and nasal polyposis.
The Signs and Symptoms of Asthma
Asthmatic patients present symptoms in an episodic manner. In other words, you could be symptom-free for weeks before experiencing a severe episode.
Every once in a while, patients experience severe symptoms known as asthma exacerbation.
Here are the common signs and symptoms of asthma:
- Chest pain
- Apnea (i.e., arrested breathing)
The Treatment of Asthma
The primary goal of asthma therapy is to reverse the mechanisms that lead to this condition.
You may be prescribed one or more of the following medications:
- Corticosteroids – the drugs will temper down inflammation and edema.
- Short-acting beta-receptor agonists – these drugs will increase the diameter of the airways, allowing air to flow more freely.
- Long-acting beta-receptor agonists – prevents future asthma exacerbation by expanding the diameter of the airways.
Asthma is a common respiratory condition that presents with shortness of breath, wheezing, and coughing. If you believe you have Asthma, telemedicine makes it possible for you to get the care you deserve. Schedule a virtual consultation with a Telakai Health online Provider and get on the road to recovery. Schedule your visit today.