Exercise Induced Asthma Allows You to Exercise Safely
Exercise induced asthma, as the name suggests, is caused by physical exercises. Everybody needs physical exercises to main health and prevent various types of lifestyle-related diseases. However, people with asthma may have to be careful when doing exercises, as the changes in temperature humidity may influence the airway. When the airway responds by constricting, then the individual will find it harder to have normal breathing.
Exercise Induced Asthma: Symptoms and Causes
The symptoms of exercise induced asthma usually begin 5 to 20 minutes after the start of exercise. The symptoms include coughing with asthma, wheezing, unusual fatigue, tightening chest, and shortness of breath while exercising. Of all, coughing is the most common one. They usually resolve in another 20 to 30 minutes.
What actually causes this type of asthma? When you exercise, your body demands increased amount of oxygen. Then, your body responds by breathing faster and deeper. In normal breathing, you inhale by using your mouth and exhale with your nose. Excises expose you to cold, dry air. Then, the airway responds by narrowing and leads to asthma symptoms.
In other words, the type of exercise you do influences the risks of exercise induced asthma. Exercises, which make your exposed to cold, dry air are more likely to induce symptoms of asthma. On the other hand, exercises that involve warm and humid air are safer for asthma patients. However, some other risk factors may also influence the risks of asthma symptoms while exercises. They include:
- High pollen counts
- High pollution level
- Exposure to irritants like fumes and cigarette smokes
- Recent asthma episode
- Recent cold episode
Exercise Induced Asthma: Treatment and Prevention
Fortunately, proper management and prevention can help you do exercises free of asthma symptoms. The following are some preventive steps to minimize the risk of asthmatic symptoms:
- Use a mask or a scarf that covers your mouth/nose when you exercise in cold, dry weather
- Do proper warming-up session, at least 6 to 10 minutes before the main exercises. Warming up also minimizes the risk of injuries due to physical exercises.
- Do proper cools-down, at least 6 to 10 minutes. Cooling down allows your airways to adjust and function normally.
- Avoid exercises outdoor when the temperatures are frigid. Indoor exercises such as in gym or indoor pool may reduce the risk of asthmatic symptoms.
- Watch your respiratory status carefully and regularly. Take a test before and during the exercises. If you notice unusual changes, you had better stop the exercises and cool down.
- Do not do physical exercises when you just had cold, sickness, or upper respiratory issues. Wait until the sickness subsides and your body fully recovers before doing physical exercises.
- Take a medicine before exercise. However, make sure you do this under a doctor’s supervision. The most commonly prescribed medicine to prevent symptoms of asthma include short-acting beta agonist, inhaled corticosteroids, long-acting bronchodilator, anticholinergic, or mast cell stabilizers.
The Right Exercises to Avoid Exercise Induced Asthma
In addition, you need to consider the type of exercises that are safer for asthma patients. Certain exercises make you more vulnerable to the symptoms of asthma. The following are some activities to consider:
- Physical activities that involve short, intermittent bursts of exercises. Examples include volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling, baseball, and football. These sports are safer as your airways can function normally compared to sports that require endurance.
- Walking and Leisure biking. These are good to maintain your respiratory systems. Try to focus on breathing using your nose instead of your mouth only.
- Swimming, but make sure you do it under a humid, warm setting. Make sure to swim in indoor pool. Pay close attention to any symptoms you may have. Indoor pool is often associated with irritants, which can make your asthma even worse.
However, a number of activities are more likely to induce exercise induced asthma. They include sports or physical activities that require you to be in cold, dry weather. Examples are skiing, ice skating, ice hockey, or snowboarding. Furthermore, try to avoid sports that involve constant activities, such as soccer and long distance running.
Again, make sure that your physician knows everything your do with exercises. Then, pay close attention to any changes in your respiratory conditions during the exercises. If, after doing the preventive measures above, you still have the symptoms of exercise induced asthma, this is the time to seek help. The doctor may ask you to avoid physical exercises for sometime.
With affective management, you can enjoy physical activities and maintain healthy body without episodes of exercise induced asthma. Happy exercising!
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