Asthma is a chronic condition that has no treatment. The aim of management is to control the condition. This can be accomplished by:
Avoid recurring and chronic symptoms such as nocturnal coughing
Reduce the dosage of medications.
Maintaining lung function
Maintaining regular routine
Avoiding attacks of severe asthma that require hospitalization and visits to an Emergency Room
Tips for controlling asthma:
Manage other conditions that could worsen asthma
Avoid allergens known to cause allergic reactions.
Create an action plan for the case of asthma attacks.
The asthma action program should contain the medication regimen as well as the avoidance of triggers, monitoring of asthma attacks and the steps to take in the event that asthmatic symptoms become acute even after treatment. In other words, when should you go for treatment at an Hospital Emergency Department for treatment
Treatments to treat Asthma
Asthmatic medication are broadly classified into medicines that offer long-term control as well as those which provide quick relief from asthmatic symptoms.
Both medications are aimed at reducing inflammation in the airways in order to treat asthma.
The initial treatment is based on the severity of your asthma. The follow-up treatment is contingent on the extent to which the patient is following an asthma treatment plan as well as how effective the plan is.
Take note that your asthma action plan may change according to changes in your life and social surroundings due to the fact that different social interactions will expose you to different allergens that are present in your surroundings.
Adjustments to dosage of medications is determined by your primary doctor. If you’ve altered the dosage of your medication yourself then you must inform your physician immediately in order to allow the proper titration of your medication every time you visit the doctor.
The doctor will try to utilize the least amount of medicine needed in order to manage asthma. Therefore, it is essential that your doctor is informed of the quantity of medication you’ve been taking.
Certain patient groups require more intense titration regimens for example, infants, pregnant women or those with specific requirements.
Asthma Action Plan
Each Asthma action plan must be tailored to the specific patient. The plan should contain the regimen of medication, the avoidance of triggers, monitoring asthma attacks, and steps to be taken if the symptoms of asthma become more serious.
It is recommended to collaborate with your primary doctor to create your asthma treatment plan. The plan should outline everything above in the smallest detail.
When it comes to children, caregivers and parents must know about the asthma action plan for their child. This includes babysitters, employees at day care centers school, parents, and those who organize outdoor child activities.
Avoidance of Triggers
A myriad of allergens have been proven as being linked to asthma. For the patient who is suffering the most important factor is to determine the triggers that cause asthma. Then, you should know the steps you should do when you are triggered by asthma.
Simple common sense is essential. For instance, if you are a victim of an allergy or sensitization to pollen be sure to restrict your exposure to pollens and remain indoors when needed. If you’re sensitive to animals, or even pet fur, do not allow pets to stay at home , or let pets be allowed into your bedroom.
It is important to note that physical activity can trigger asthmatic attacks. It is however advised that asthma sufferers regularly exercise since in the long term exercise can help in managing asthma. Talk to your doctor in case you have asthma attacks during sports. There are many medications to combat asthma while exercising.
If your asthma is strongly linked to allergens that can’t be eliminated (eg dust) your physician may suggest allergy medications.
Treatments to treat Asthma
Talk to your primary physician about medication that can be used to control your asthma. Your primary physician will modify the dosage of your medication depending on the needs. If you’ve made a self-adjustment to dosage, it is important to notify your primary physician prior to the next appointment.
In general, the medications for asthma are available as an injection, a pill or Nebulized drug that is consumed by means or inhalers. The nebulized drug is inhaled through the lungs from where it will exert its effects.
It is important to note that the use of inhalers requires a specific method and should be instructed by a doctor or certified health professional.
Treatments for Long Term Control
Asthma sufferers who are chronic will require medications to maintain the management of asthma. The medications are slow in action and can reduce inflammation of the airways.
Inhaled corticosteroids can be employed for the long-term control of asthma. They reduce inflammation of the airways in the lung. Inhaling corticosteroids regularly will significantly reduce the frequency and severity of symptoms.
The most frequently reported adverse consequence of inhaled corticosteroids oral thrush. Spacers when using inhaled corticosteroids can lower the risk of developing oral thrush. Talk to your physician in case you’re not sure the proper way to use the spacer. Simple rinses of your mouth following the inhalation of corticosteroids may also help to reduce the likelihood in oral thrush.
Patients with severe asthma may have to take oral corticosteroids instead of inhaled corticosteroids for adequate treatment of their asthma. In contrast to inhaled corticosteroids which can be used for a long time however, oral corticosteroids may cause severe side effects if they are utilized for extended periods.
In the long run, oral corticosteroids may increase the risk of developing diabetes, cataracts, osteoporosis or abnormal activity in metabolic pathways.
Talk to your physician to assess the risks and benefits prior to taking corticosteroids orally.
Other long-term medications:
Cromolyn – This medication prevents inflammation of the airways. It is also used in the form of a nebulized medicine that is dispensed through an inhaler.
Omalizumab is an immunotherapy type and works against the Immunoglobulin (anti-IgE) that causes the breathing passages to narrow. The medicine is generally administered in the form of an injection, either at least once a month and blocks your immune system from being triggered by triggers that cause asthma. However, it is not the first-line treatment for asthma, and may not be recommended by your physician.
Long-acting beta2-agonists inhaled are often used in conjunction with corticosteroids inhaled to create an synergistic effect in increasing the size of the airways in the lung.
Leukotriene modifiers These are oral drugs that help reduce inflammation in the airways.
Theophylline Theophylline Theophylline is taken orally or by injections. It works to let airways in the lung open.
Be aware that there’s an increased chance of symptoms resurfacing when long-term medications are abruptly discontinued. Additionally, all long-term medication will cause side negative effects. Discuss with your physician prior to beginning long-term treatment regimens.
Rapid acting Medicines
Beta 2 short-acting Agonists are typically the first line medication within this category. They are typically administered by nebulization using an inhaler. They work by relaxing the muscles of the airways, permitting more air flow through.
Fast acting medicines are best taken when symptoms start to appear.
If you require the medication for more than two days in a week, it is recommended to consult your physician to develop additional strategies to support your asthma treatment strategy.
Patients suffering from asthma are advised to keep their inhalers with quick relief on them in all times.
It is important to note that these drugs don’t reduce inflammation in the airways and thus can’t replace longer-acting medications.
Evidence of the Asthma Progression
The regular use of the peak flow, as well as periodic visits with your primary doctor is the most effective method to document the progression of Asthma.
As a general rule asthma can be managed If:
The symptoms do not occur more than two days per week
The symptoms do not disrupt sleep at least twice per month.
There are no limits for your daily activities.
The need for quick-relief medicine is less than two times a week.
A less then one major asthma attack each year, requiring oral steroids
The readings of the Peak Flow Meter are at the level of 80% of baseline
Peak Flow Meter
Your primary doctor will provide instructions on how to use the peak flow measurement device.
When it is used the peak flow monitor determines the maximum exhalation of air out of the lungs while exhaling. Regularly measured measurements can be used to document the progression of the progress of asthma. It is suggested that patients record their peak flow every day.
In the initial stage following diagnosis, it is crucial to establish the baseline peak flow. This is frequently referred to as the patients “Personal Most Effective” read of peak flow. The future control of asthma is based on this base. The best asthma control is the maintenance of the peak flow minimum 80 percent of the baseline.
Regular readings of peak flow can assist in predicting impending asthmatic attacks. The gradual decline in readings of peak flow can signal an imminent attack, and should be included in the Asthma Action Plan.
A series of medical checks with your primary physician each fortnight in the beginning of treatment. After asthma has been controlled the primary doctor may choose to consult with you for an extended period of time.
In the medical reviews essential information that must be provided by your primary physician are:
Intensity of Asthma Attack
Changes in symptoms
Changes in Peak Readings of Flow
The daily routine can be altered, for example exercise tolerance
Problems with adhering to The Asthma Action Plan
Troubles with the current medication
Get medical advice for the following conditions:
Regular medicines fail to treat asthma attacks.
The peak flow readings fall down to less than 50 percent of the baseline
Take immediate action to the closest Hospital Emergency Room if:
There is a severe breath shortness until the point that walking becomes difficult
Your tongue and lips turn to a blue
Asthma – A Lifelong Issue
There is no treatment for asthma. The successful control of asthma requires patients to be active in the treatment of asthma, by adhering the asthma treatment plan.
Your primary doctor is your ideal partner for developing the asthma treatment plan. The plan will remind you of your prescribed medication regimen as well as triggers and procedures to follow when symptoms of asthma become more severe or develop. Children should also be included in the development of their action plans because it is their individual effort that will be the most important factor in long-term treatment of asthma.
Asthma is not going to go out of fashion. However, it can be managed.