Living with Asthma
Although not a life-threatening condition, asthma can decidedly hinder a person’s quality of life without proper management of symptoms and asthma attacks. Asthma symptoms tend to be sporadic and occur at any time. Managing asthma symptoms can be tricky depending on a number of factors including the environment and aging. Creating daily methods to manage triggers and health can increase the number of days living without asthma symptoms.
Tracking Your Asthma
As people age, asthma can change over time. Symptoms have a tendency to transform into other physical indicators not previously experienced. Commonly, asthma symptoms can become more severe and occur more often as people age. Typical changes in asthma symptoms can include:
- Less asthma symptoms
- New asthma symptoms
- Specific symptoms are more aggressive
- Medications are not as effective
- Side effects of asthma medication are more prominent
- New Triggers
With changes in your asthma come changes in your management plan and lifestyle. To best adapt your asthma management regimes effectively, begin a symptom diary. Recording in detail daily experiences with your asthma allows you to track the changes in your asthma, how your asthma is affecting your life and new triggers for your asthma. When you are recording symptoms, consider including the following information:
- Time of day symptoms occurred
- Description of symptom including bodily location
- Severity of symptoms
- Activity being done before or during the arrival of symptoms
- Remedy or action is taken to relieve the symptoms
- Indication if exact symptoms are reoccurring
Keep your doctor informed with your symptom diary. With accurate information, you and your doctor can discuss your asthma and how to properly handle it. Being aware of your body and how it reacts to being exposed to certain factors will be the most important knowledge to have when trying to reduce asthma symptoms. In the same sense, the body must be properly cared for in all aspects. Seeking overall health is the next step to a productive management plan.
Maintain Your Well-Being
Begin by raising your overall health. The body is an entity in which different parts influence each other. Ensuring the whole body is healthy will lessen the symptoms of asthma. Putting forth extra effort to include a healthy diet and healthy lifestyle can greatly reduce unnecessary interruptions in the joy of living. Here are a few tips to build better wellbeing:
Take Your Medication
Obvious to some but still an issue with others. Taking your asthma medication is key to symptom management. Occasionally those living with asthma will think the medications are not effective. On the contrary, medications prescribed by the doctor are necessary and should not be ignored. Daily exercise and a healthy diet will not fully prevent or manage asthma properly.
Stop Smoking Immediately!
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but there are still many people with asthma abusing smoking products. Smoking with asthma significantly increases the occurrence and severity of symptoms. Smoking also reduces the effectiveness of medications. For those who do not smoke, actively avoid second-hand smoke.
Exercise on a Regular Basis
Exercising may seem like the wrong activity to suggest for those with asthma. However, strengthening the lungs through physical activity can reduce symptom reoccurrence. Exercise will also disperse stress, another trigger for asthma, from everyday life keeping you calm and relaxed.
Receive your Vaccinations
During flu and cold season, it is pertinent to receive vaccinations and prepare prevention methods. Cold and flu illnesses are viral infections of the respiratory system. Because of aging bodies and failing immune systems, older people with asthma will find it more difficult to control asthma symptoms when ill.
Sickness will be more impactful and will last longer for older adults with asthma. Therefore, seniors should be more aware and take extra precaution with vaccinations and other possible respiratory viral infections. Specifically, the Pneumococcal and pneumonia vaccinations prevent serious chest infections and should be seriously considered by those living with asthma. Coupling medication regimes and management regimes with a healthy wellbeing can be the ultimate prevention method for your asthma.