Living with Asthma

Living with asthma is a battle, especially through childhood. It is estimated that around 17 million people in the U.S. suffer from this medical condition. There are many ways to help you breathe easier and keep your asthma under control. Let me start with my story.

I was diagnosed when I was just a tiny little thing. I don’t remember ever NOT having asthma. When I was little, I lived in the California smog, which didn’t help things. I was able to still play sports, like soccer and softball, but it was more difficult for me than that average player. I had to have my inhaler on me at all time. There were many times that I remember being in the hospital with for having an asthma attack.

Then I moved to Tennessee. It got a lot better. I am still in Tennessee, and it only gets really bad when I am catching a cold or when the seasons change. It is no longer a daily battle, as I have learned ways to control my breathing.

First of all, be sure you have a physician that you know and trust. He/she will be your best advisor when it comes to your asthma. There are several different medications for asthma. You might have to go through trial and error to find the best one for you.

Try to avoid smoke, which is obvious, but sometimes easier said than done. Sit in the non-smoking area in restaurants. Have family smoke outside when they come to visit.

Vacuum and dust often. Get rid of the dust and dander that are in your house. I vacuum every day ( since I have a two year old, I have to).

Some people are allergic to cats, dogs, birds, and/or rabbits.

Learn some relaxation techniques. Stress can cause an attack. Read a book, watch a video, or read online on ways to relax.

Try to avoid strenuous physical activity. It’s okay to go out and play ball, to hike a trail, or to walk the dog, but know that warning signs of an attack.

I know that living with asthma is a chore, but as with any chore, you can make it easier. Talk to your doctor and make an asthma management plan. Always be prepared in case of an emergency.

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