Asthma is a medical disorder in which a person feels difficulty in breathing. Asthma is usually caused by allergens which cause allergy in the body. In asthma the breathing tubes of lungs get swelled up and inflamed resulting in narrowing of breathing tubes (bronchioles).The signs of asthma include difficulty in breathing, cough, sputum production(Phlegm), chest congestion.
Sign and symptoms of asthma:
• Cough is a frequent sign in asthma it can be productive (with sputum) or without sputum.
• Breathing difficulty commonly associated with wheezing or whistling sounds from the lungs.
• Chest congestion, felling of heaviness in the chest.
• Breathlessness after slight work or walking.
Causes of asthma:
Asthma is an autoimmune disorder. Following are some factors that can trigger an asthma attack.
• Substances which cause allergy are called allergens like dust, pollens, and certain foods like fish or egg, animal dust.
• Cigarette or tobacco smoke, air pollution from vehicles, dust from home, perfumes or other fumes.
• Fast food or cold drinks.
• Heavy physical exertion.
• Mental stress.
- Things to do:
• Deep breathing exercises like Pranayama
• Avoid all allergens.
• Avoid dust. A housewife having asthma may be greatly helped by vacuum cleaner to clean dust. Use a mask while dusting.
• Avoid carpets on the floor, which harbor dust.
• Avoid pets if you are asthmatic.
• Avoid industrial fumes in factory workers.
• Ask your doctor or healthcare provider how to use your emergency inhaler correctly.
• If a particular food triggers an attack of asthma, avoid it for example cold drinks, particular fruits, fish, chocolates.
• If any emotional or family problem, try to sort out, or use tranquillizer or consult psychiatrist.
• For repeated attacks, advise change of weather for example a holiday in dry climate, will help more than medicines.
• Avoid mosquito coils and mats. Use mosquito net instead or topical mosquito repelling cream.
• Avoid passive smoking.
• Asthma is one of psychosomatic illness. So mind tranquility is very important part of treatment.
• If a patient of asthma gets a dramatic relief in dry climate and attack otherwise, he or she should change the residence, if possible to a dry climate place.
• Take a glass of warm water early in the morning; take warm drinks like tea, coffee, soups often.
Things to avoid:
- Junk food or deep fried food like pizzas, hamburgers, chips.
- Cold foods items like ice creams, cold drinks.
Sour foods like non fresh curds, raw onion. Avoid sour fruits like citrus fruits (orange, lemon), sour grapes.
- By trial and error method and keen observation, note if any particular food is causing an attack of asthma, such food must be totally avoided.
Avoid heavy meals – eat in small quantity of meals and take dinner early.
Avoid sleep at least for 2 hours after meals.
- Stress: Learn to manage stress as it can directly prompt the asthma attack. Try Yoga and meditation as it helps to relieve stress.
Home remedies for Asthma
Drink Ginger Water
Cut a few pieces of ginger and add them to boiling water. Let it cool for sometime, and then drink it. This will help clear the congestion from the air passageways.
Put three or four drops of eucalyptus oil into a bowl of boiled water. Breathe in the steam which will clear the congestion in the nasal passages.
Eat Raw Onions
Eating raw onions can provide immense relief from asthma symptoms.
Onions possess anti-inflammatory properties which can clear the congested air passageways. Also, the sulfur content in onions can reduce inflammation in the lungs.
People who suffer from asthma often suffer from a deficiency of Vitamin C. Squeeze some lemon juice into a glass of water and add some salt or sugar to taste. Drink this regularly to reduce asthma attacks.
You can also eat fruits and vegetables which are rich in Vitamin C such oranges, guavas, strawberries, tomatoes, capsicums, broccoli, kiwi, papayas, and blueberries.
Mustard Oil & Camphor Massage
Warm some mustard oil and crush and mix some camphor into the oil. Massage your chest gently with the warm oil. As the warmth spreads on your chest, it will clear the congestion.
Drink Tea Made With Pepper, or Lemon
While making tea, you can crush some whole black pepper and add to the tea. Sieve and drink. This will clear the congestion. Alternatively, you can also squeeze a few drops of lemon to the tea and drink.