My Advice About Asthma
Here is my advice about asthma in a series of short notes about asthma.
I suffer with chronic asthma
This year – 2018 – I am 75 years of age and still very fit and strong.
Every day I have asthma and take asthma medication.
I find the most powerful medication is Foradile, available in Australia but not available in Thailand.
I am, and always have been an asthmatic, my condition changes from mild to severe at any time for little reason.
Luckily I have survived.
I owe my strength to my genes and the hard physical work that I enjoy, and also to the doctors and nurses that have pulled me through many seemingly irreversible asthma attacks.
Of course the asthma drugs are my final savoir.
Here is my advice about asthma that I wish to convey to those who have asthma and those whose children have asthma.
PLEASE NOTE: – my advice is from my personal experiences and my observations.
I am not a doctor – you must use your doctor’s advice.
Some people including so called faith healers etc.. will try to tell you how to control and cure asthma, do listen, but by no means use their advice rather than consulting a doctor.
A strong healthy normally breathing person can be dead within 45 minutes of the onslaught of a massive asthma attack.
Most asthma attacks are mild.
Most asthma attacks start out mild and go away with simple treatment (a puffer) or go away with relaxation, or just hang around until treated.
Children should be treated as soon as symptoms arise.
Wheezing is often the first symptom.
If a childs asthma attack does not respond to treatment within a few minutes then it is off to the hospital.
A mild asthma attack might go away on the way to hospital or at hospital due to the change of environment.
The best is cold dry air when I am having an asthma attack.
The cold air from a car air conditioner can sometimes stop an asthma attack.
I sometimes go for a ride on my motor bike to get fresh air and stop an asthma attack.
Asthma is not the same every day, some days almost nothing is a trigger and other days almost everything is a trigger.
Important:- If you are taking a person to hospital who is having an asthma attack, encourage but do not force them to hurry or get changed into street clothes or wear a seat belt etc., just get them there as fast as possible without hassling them.
Try not to put an asthmatic in a car where someone has smoked a cigarette, even if it was smoked yesterday.
When you get to the hospital send someone ahead to tell the nurse to prepare for an asthma patient who is slowly walking into the emergency ward.
If a person is having a server asthma attack or a long asthma attack they might appear very relaxed and not wanting to cause a disturbance – this could be lack of oxygen to the brain.
This dangerous condition is called Hypoxia
These notes apply to adults and children.
Some people have only one attach of asthma in their lifetime.
Some people have asthma constantly.
Some people grow out of their asthma.
Growing out of asthma might take 2 to 20 years.
Things that start an attack are called triggers.
Some common asthma triggers are physical exercise, excitement, worry or a fright, a quick change in the weather, cigarettes, other peoples cigarette smoke, perfume, hair spray, shampoo, smelly soap, laundry detergent smell on bedding, diesel exhaust fumes, petrol exhaust fumes, fresh cut grass, jasmine in flower, honey suckle in flower, horse smells, dogs, cats, dust, hay, oil paint, mould, vacuum cleaning, and some foods like MSG and pickled onions.
Not everybody have the same triggers.
People with asthma automatically hold their breath and shallow breathe when they detect an asthma trigger.
When a person is asleep they breathe normally and do not smell the asthma triggers, this can be dangerous if a trigger e.g. cigarette smoke comes into the room.
Not everybody with asthma respond to the same medication.
Asthma can be embarrassing especially for children.
Asthma can be extremely embarrassing for shy children.
Children may try to hide an asthma attack if they are embarrassed.
Asthma is not caused by hot humid weather.
Asthma becomes more severe during hot humid weather.
Attacks often occur around 3am during hot humid weather.
Wheezing is a first sign of a possible severe attack.
Itchy face neck and chest often accompanies an attack.
Sometimes coughing during an attack can remove fluid and open the lungs, thus relieving the asthma.
Dry coughing can make asthma worse.
Ignorance about asthma.
Most annoying for an asthmatic is the ignorance that many people have about asthma.
This ignorance can be a grave danger to asthmatic children.
Some typical things that ignorant people do and say are, I will just have a few puffs on my cigarette and put it out, or they smoke it just outside the door or even if they go well away, they come back stinking of cigarette smoke.
One little whiff of cigarette smoke can sometimes trigger a massive asthma attack.
One little whiff of cigarette smoke can trigger an asthma attack that lingers for a month.
Another annoying thing is when a parent or friend insists on wearing perfume and the asthmatic must constantly shallow breath to avoid an attack.
Asthma triggers are triggers and it does not take much to set off a trigger which may have a devastating reaction.
by Len Hend