NOML Logo NOML Navigation Gradation BG Image
About Us About Asthma Free Clinics Screenings Professional Education Get Involved/Donations Gradtion BG Image

To view a complete calendar of events for each month click on listed month.

Check Out ALL Our
FREE Online CE courses

About Asthma

Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the lungs in which the bronchial airways sometimes narrow as a result of various triggers. People with asthma have lungs that are overly sensitive and they are susceptible to such substances as pollen, dust, or cigarette smoke. Asthma does not go away nor can it be cured. The three main characteristics of asthma you should remember are Inflammation, Bronchoconstriction, and Mucous production.

What Causes Asthma

The cause of asthma is unknown, however, it is thought that there are environmental and hereditary factors associated with it. When a person has asthma these factors can cause an attack to occur. Identifying and avoiding those things that can "trigger" an attack can help keep asthma under control and even help in its treatment.

An Asthma Attack at Work

Asthma attacks vary from individual to individual. They can be mild or very severe or life threatening. When attack happens, the muscles that wrap around the airways tighten(bronchoconstricton), the lining inside the airway swells(inflammation), and an excessive amount of mucous is produce. Narrow airways make breathing difficult producing the characteristic wheeze associated with asthma. In severe attacks mucous commonly plugs the airway preventing gas exchange.

Common Asthma Triggers

Cold/Flu Weather Changes
Cigarette Smoke Exercise
Pollen Animal Dander
Mold/Mildew Strong Emotions
Dust Mites Odors/Chemicals

Asthma Symptoms

Asthma symptoms are different for each asthmatic, therefore it is important to know what your symptoms are.

Symptoms of asthma may include:

Chest Tightness
Shortness of Breath

Asthma symptoms are sometimes classified:

Mild Intermittent:
These are daytime symptoms that occur less than once a week and night time symptoms that occur no more than 2 times per month.

Mild Persistent:
These symptoms occur once week but less than once per day. Night time symptoms may occur no more than 2 times per month.

Moderate Persistent:
These symptoms occur on a daily basis and you may have night time symptoms more 1 time per week.

Severe Persistent::
These symptoms occur daily with frequent night time symptoms.

Children And Asthma

Asthma is the most common chronic disease of childhood. About 8.6 million children in the U.S. are affected and it is thought genetics plays a role in the condition. Children with asthma often have frequent respiratory infections along with coughing especially at night and after excessive. Children with asthma are often tested for allergies to determine what triggers they are sensitive to. It is important that they avoid these triggers to maintain control of their asthma.

Allergies And Asthma

Most children and half of all adults with asthma have allergies. Allergies occur when the body's immune system perceives harmless substances as dangerous. Allergic reactions in asthmatics are caused when allergens such as pollen, dust mites or mold spores are inhaled into the lungs. As a result certain chemicals are released into the lungs that irritate them causing bronchoconstriction and inflammation.